On the 24th of January, Cork Education Centre, in association with the IMT and UCC hosted a free workshop for school teachers about Maths Circles.
Maths Circles are lunch-time or after-school clubs, run by teachers in their schools. They provide learning activities in an informal setting that are designed to foster enjoyment of mathematics in young people. Their tradition goes back to more than a century in some countries in central and eastern Europe. In Ireland, Maths Circles were started a few years ago in the Cork area. The Maths Circles Ireland initiative offers teachers the opportunity to enhance the teaching of creative problem solving in schools, based on our Maths Circles Handbook with fully-detailed and class room tested lesson plans.
At this workshop, the organisers provided ideas, methodologies and practical advice, including information on motivation, context, aims and methods. There was also reflections from an experienced teacher on what how Maths Circles worked in their school and the workshop included a sample lesson and examples illustrating the role of Language and Logic in Mathematical problem solving. On top of all this, the workshop was also a place in which like-minded teachers could get together and share their experiences.
The teachers interacted brilliantly with the material and many questions were asked. They were interested in particular with hands on activities and with the amount of lessons on offer.
The slides from the workshop are available here and for more information about Maths Circles and for free, classroom tested lesson plans, visit https://www.irishmathstrust.com/teachers-maths-circles and mathscircles.ie.