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2017 Maths Grants

It took a long time to go through the very many inspirational applications for Maths grants. The successful applications were specific about the challenges and needs of their organisations and how funding from the Jo Walters Trust could help them to achieve their goals.

  • Langham School in Essex has £750 to help them bring Maths learning outside the classroom. The recently qualified Outdoor Practitioner has an area next to her classroom where she has put some shades and blackboards, and now she can furnish this with, amongst other things, maths vocabulary wall signs, giant numberlines, dominoes, sand and water trays and an outdoor teaching clock. We look forward to seeing photos of this in action.

  • Castlehill, in Dunbarton, has identified what many teachers find, that mathematically able children, when faced with “wordy” questions, fall apart. They are using their grant of £750 to introduce problem solving cards into their teaching, to replace textbook questions. These sturdy reusable cards pose real-life problems and the full set covers the full primary age-range. Tackling these should give the children the ability to justify their reasoning and develop a robust confidence in applying their skills.

  • Hope Primary School in Huyton, Knowlsey is also working outside, to develop a love of maths and seeing the practical use of maths in everyday life. They are receiving £700 to build “The Maths Station” with activities that the children can choose to take part in during their lunch and break times. The plan is that a specialist subject teacher will train those children who lack mathematical confidence, so they become familiar and confident with the activities available. They can then become maths play leaders, taking responsibility for the Maths Station and becoming role models by teaching others how to use and enjoy it.

  • Lowdham CofE Primary School, Nottingham, is going to use £500 to kick-start a “fruit shop stall” and encourage some young business minds in a Primary School. Canvassing their market, costing, budgeting and calculating mark-ups is going help them develop a range of mathematical skills. Their head teacher has done this before and is keen to share the experience.

  • Brackensdale Enhanced Resource Junior School is an inclusive school with special provision to support children with autism and attachment disorder; 52% of their children have special educational needs. £450 will help them buy equipment for practical, sensory and real-life maths activities. This will include buckets and measuring jugs to teach problem solving through water play, place value counters to explore numbers in a hands-on and visual way, and outdoor problem-solving signs.

  • Kirkton of Largo Primary School, Fife are planning another ‘outdoor maths shed’ to promote mathematical outdoor learning. £640 will help furnish a shed with blackboard sides and to kit it out internally with baskets filled with a range of rustic math discs, sticks and stones, problem cards, wooden numerals, measuring equipment as well as bunting and number border rolls.

2017 Aberdeenshire Grants

In 2017, the Jo Walters Trust again welcomed applications to fund projects which provide education in the outdoors in Aberdeenshire. We received a huge number of really exciting applications and, in order to try to bring as many of these to fruition as possible, decided to increase the total budget from £6,000 to £9,200, meaning there were 5 recipients rather than 3. These were:
  • Banchory-Devenick Primary School: £1,800 to spend on equipment to equip their forest school  They will use it to purchase a tarpaulin and tools, such as loppers, secateurs, whittling tools and bowsaws, as well as firelighting equipment, a fire safety blanket and cooking equipment. 
  • Aberdeenshire Sailing Trust SC043046: £2,270 to fund the purchase of a new safety boat. This will enable them to offer sailing at Knockburn Loch throughout the sailing season as currently they can only offer sailing there from July - October as their only rescue boat is needed at Loch of Skene from April - end of June. With this grant they will be able to offer sailing to local primary schools in the form of activities days or after school clubs, as well as activities for groups such as brownies & cubs in the Summer term.   They will also set up a new disability sailing night.
  • Aboyne Academy Climbing Club: £1,160 which will be spent on new climbing equipment in order to make activities more accessible to a range of physical abilities. Their goal is to extend their ability to use outdoor crags as well as the indoor wall for a greater range of activities including rock climbing and abseiling. They plan to add larger accessible climbing holds to their older wall to facilitate a greater range of users.
  • 1st Fraserburgh Scout Group: £1,970. This will allow them to buy camping equipment so that they can develop their nascent Duke of Edinburgh's award scheme, allowing more of the scouts to take part. As well as the camping equipment it will enable a member of staff to complete their Mountain Leader assessment which is a requirement for to offer the Gold Duke of Edinburgh's award. 
  • Peterhead Sea Cadets (SC023599): £2,000. This money will be a significant portion of the money required to buy the sea cadets a box trailer. They need the trailer to store all the kit required to take children out on the water, as last year their previous store was broken into and equipment was stolen. Storing it in a trailer is both more secure, and also will allow them the flexibility to transport equipment for other unit activities including the unit's annual summer camp, D of E expedition training, fundraising activities and training days for the cadets.
All the groups have undertaken to provide us with updates as the projects get underway so we hope to be able to share news of these soon.

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