Employability Skill Development In Maths

By April 15, 2020 No Comments


Maths teachers often hear the question “when am I going to use this in my life?”.

Learners behave according to the laws of evolution. They look to conserve energy. Void of a good reason as to the importance of a topic, they switch off. Capturing their attention becomes a battle.

The relevance of maths might not be in the topic itself, but in the skills the topic develops. Maths can help foster, for example: –

  1. Resilience?—?overcoming difficult challenges requires resilience
  2. Problem solving?—?Wrestling with difficult maths questions requires powers of pragmatism, developing a learner’s ability to solve problems
  3. Analytical thinking?—?Numbers don’t lie, however, they can often mislead. The ability to analyse results and relate them to the real-world story they’re telling can have a huge impact. *DIGRESSION ALERT* On Monday Night Football, Jamie Carragher highlighted the fact that Liverpool scored more goals when Mo Salah played as a central striker. Cause and effect? That was the point he was trying to illustrate. However, even superficial inspection showed that he played as a central striker against weaker teams. That’s probably a more likely cause of Liverpool scoring more goals. As a United fan, it pains me to acknowledge the fact that Liverpool score goals.
  4. Organisation?—?My dad used to tell me off for rushing my maths homework and being scruffy. When I got to university, I realised that maths develops organisation of thought. You have to be neat in your workings in order to get the answer right consistently. This clarity of thinking helps in organising the rest of your life

All of the “soft” skills maths develops are worthwhile. Even revising for a maths exam develops skills. The best technique for maths revision is practice, over and over again. This shows tenacity, perseverance and stickability. All skills employers value FAR MORE HIGHLY than your ability to do a simultaneous equation. Maths teachers should not shy away from this.

Promote this work ethic. How can the class’s tough guy be tough if he whinges and moans when he can’t do a maths question. True tough people face down challenges and succeed without moaning. Often, reticence in the maths class is caused by a lack of confidence. Focusing on developing soft skills is an OPEN mindset. Bringing this mindset into the maths classroom builds this mindset and will VASTLY increase engagement.

Need some help?

The introduction of soft skills is easy. It is as easy as 1,2,3.

  1. Set the tone with your learning objective?—?“Today, we’re developing our resilience through practicing algebra questions”.
  2. Short starter?—?create a short starter activity for the skills you’re trying to develop. There are some ideas to download below.
  3. Reflective activity?—?students need to understand the skills they have built. This will increase engagement and help to build confidence, self awareness and understanding. Kloodle badges are a fantastic way to capture this.

Resources

We have a whole host of starter ideas and lesson activities that will help you to develop skills in the classroom. Sign up to our email list and we’ll send you copies of all our lesson plans and starter activities: –

http://eepurl.com/gbtulP

Give us a call?—?we’d love to hear from you 0161 468 2724

Phill

About Phill

Phillip is co-founder of Kloodle.

Leave a Reply