Shanghai Maths Teachers to Improve UK Maths

Over the past few years, British maths teachers have travelled to Shanghai in the hopes of understanding what exactly it is that makes children in Shanghai so successful when it comes to receiving high maths test scores. Now it is time to see those efforts come into fruition, with Shanghai maths teachers hoping to make an improvement in children’s test scores within four years.

Using Different, Proven Methods

imagesShanghai maths teachers use a different approach to teaching, which is that every lesson is shaped to cover and concentrate on a single mathematical concept. The class does not move on until every child has mastered that lesson, making sure that each lesson is cemented in the minds of the children.

Hopes for Improvement

Teachers are due to teach children both the mathematic lesson and the law behind the approach we take towards each problem, in order to give them a better understanding of the ‘why’ we do things, as well as the ‘how’ it is done. Government officials hope that this will help children glean better results from tests and improve their mathematical skills overall. As of yet, the experiment is still only in the larval stages so it is too early to see whether or not much improvement will occur, but it could make all the difference to individual children.

Young Ambassadors travel to Bangladesh for the Send my Friend to School Campaign

Photo by Nana Kofi AcquahAs winners of the 2015 ‘Send My Friend to School’ campaign, George Watts and Emily Pembeton from Ysgol Gyfun Plasmawr in Cardiff have been given the opportunity to go to Bangladesh last month.

They made the trip as Young Ambassadors for the campaign and were supported by the Global Campaign for Education UK.

A fantastic achievement for any young person, George and Emily travelled to Ghana on a mission with ActionAid and the Global Campaign for Education UK in order to ask important questions about encouraging children into education. On this trip they met with children who were denied the chance of a proper education, shedding light on how this can affect their entire future.

Emily and George managed to see first-hand how a lack of education can lead to a downward spiral, as children are unable to obtain better jobs for themselves, thus trapping them in a cycle of poverty. The Young Ambassadors campaign comes about as a result of the attempts made to promote education and its concept of being a necessity as opposed to a privilege reserved only for the rich and wealthy.

Upon their return, Emily and George were able to share and speak about the issues they had witnessed with teachers at the NUT conference and even to parliamentarians in the House of Commons.


uniced-300x199Hundreds of schools across the country took part in a UNICEF campaign which celebrated the 25th anniversary of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. These rights were created in order to better protect youngsters and improve a sense of community. Rights include providing what a child essentially needs to survive and grow in order to fulfil their true potential and these rights are given to every child regardless of age, race or gender.

Young pupils at Aberchirder Primary took part in a nationwide celebration of children’s rights by walking through the town on Thursday 20th November and delivering messages to local passersby about what the 1989 UN Convention meant to them and their individual learning. It was a new and exciting opportunity for the children to pass on what they had learnt about the convention as well as expressing their own views as to how things can be improved in the future.

The pupils have been praised for taking an interest into equal rights for all and it is encouraging to see young children taking an active stance in raising awareness for underprivileged children who still struggle all over the world. As teachers, we fully support the idea that every child should have the right to a professional education that helps them to grow as an individual. Why not apply for a substitute teaching position today to make a difference in a child’s life?

Compulsory Testing at Age 4?


The decision has recently been made to introduce compulsory testing for children aged four and five, to get a basic outline of their cognitive abilities when they start school. The tests will take place within the first few weeks of reception class in order to give early years teachers a better understanding of each child’s abilities, so that they can give them the help they need to start learning.


These tests are due to be introduced from 2016, and have received criticism from parents, unions and academics who are concerned that ‘pigeon-holing’ students into set skill ranges at such a young age can only damage their potential to learn. In response to this, the Department of Education has considered abolishing the current key stage one tests that take place when most children are aged seven.

It will be compulsory for all children to complete these tests in reception from 2016, although the decision has been made not to tell Parents of their child’s ranking.

Child assessment has long been subject to tweaks and changes, in order for us to better understand the learning level of children. Do you think four is too early to start testing children? Or do you feel that it is the perfect opportunity to give them the help that they may need? At RedBox Teachers, we always prioritise learning over anything else, so with a whole host of qualified Supply Teachers and Teaching Assistants, you can be sure to find an excellent match here at Redbox, whether you are a supply teacher or teaching assistant looking for new work, or currently work at a school that is looking for new supply teachers.