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The Meridian School • Garden Walk • Royston • Hertfordshire • SG8 7JH

tel: 01763 242236      email: office.meridian@rsat.org.uk

 

 

 

Mathematics

 

As Queen of the Sciences, Mathematics is truly an elegant and sophisticated subject to study itself. Indeed, the new GCSE content allows for greater depth for students at all levels of ability. With our dedicated and knowledgeable maths specialists students will have opportunities to explore in detail, and enjoy, all aspects of the course.


Furthermore, the numerical skills, algebraic reasoning, geometrical reasoning skills and the ability to interpret statistics and data, are desirable tools for any student! Many mathematical topics even appear in many other subjects, such as Sciences, Geography, even Design and Technology!


Thinking ahead Mathematics is also an important foundation for many of the paths students may follow in employment or further education. Almost all jobs and careers require you to have Mathematics GCSE. If you get a good grade at GCSE you may decide to take Mathematics or Further Mathematics A level, all of which we cater for here in The Meridian Maths Department.

Year 9


Students commence their GCSE studies immediately in Year 9 with a significant extension of many of the topics covered in Middle School. This typically includes……

  • Number
    • Place value, powers, directed numbers, inequalities, four operations with all types of numbers, estimation and rounding, factors, multiples and types of numbers
  • Algebra
    • Writing and simplifying expressions, rules of indices, expanding brackets and factorising expressions, sequences, solving equations and inequalities, algebraic proof
  • Geometry
    • Drawing, naming and calculating angles, circle terminology and calculations, 2D and 3D shapes and their characteristics, perimeter, area and volume, scales and conversions, bearings, nets
  • Data Handling
    • Using data in tables, calculating summary statistics, drawing and interpreting charts, correlation, sampling


Towards the end of May all students sit two exams (one calculator and one non-calculator) to assess their understanding of the content. These scores are used, together with four topic assessments throughout the year, to place each student in the appropriate class to continue with their GCSE studies. It is at this point that students start to follow the Foundation or Higher tier syllabus more closely.

Years 10 & 11


Students spend the rest of their time now completing the course. Each unit of work (typically 6-8 weeks) will have a mixture of topics from the four different areas of Mathematics. At the beginning and end of each unit students are assessed: the former to help the teacher gauge prior understanding and plan the content appropriately; the later to assess success and improvement in understanding.


Which course and what about exams?


Students follow the Edexcel linear course, which is 100% exam based. All students have to take three examination papers at the end of Year 11, available at two different levels (foundation and higher). A final decision regarding the level of entry for each student will be made after the Year 11 mock examination, depending on the standard each student has reached. Students will not be allowed to enter for more than one level.


The questions will be arranged so that the easiest ones come first and then the standard gradually gets harder. There will be a mixture of short and long questions. Students will not be allowed to use a calculator for the first examination paper, but it is permitted for the second and third examination papers. One might be asked to solve a problem about anything you have studied on any of the three papers.


What equipment will I need?


As well as the basic mathematical equipment like a ruler, protractor and a pair of compasses, all students need a scientific calculator and it should be brought along to every mathematics lesson so increase familiarity. Unfortunately, some students have missed out on their grades in the past by being unfamiliar with the calculator they have used in their GCSE exam.  One can buy a suitable calculator from the school at a very reasonable price. We recommend the Casio fx-83GT plus.


Extra help and enrichment


We offer a weekly drop in Maths help for all students across all abilities. Our team gladly spend the time to ensure students are supported and feel successful. Throughout the three years there are many opportunities for small group support work, extension groups and whole year group enrichment activities. In the past couple of years students have had speakers and workshops from ‘Think Maths’, Code Breaking days, ‘Maths Feasts’ from the Further Maths Support Program, opportunities to participate in the national Maths Challenges and local Team Challenges.

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