Numeracy at Meridian
Numeracy is the knowledge, skills, behaviours and dispositions that students need in order to use mathematics in a wide range of situations. It involves recognising and understanding the role of mathematics in the world and having the dispositions and capacities to use mathematical knowledge and skills purposefully.
Number, measurement and geometry, statistics and probability are common aspects of most people’s mathematical experience in everyday personal, study and work situations. Equally important are the essential roles that algebra, functions and relations, logic, mathematical structure and working mathematically play in people’s understanding of the natural and human worlds, and the interaction between them.
Why numeracy is important?
A child's first years are a time of rapid learning and development. Babies and toddlers can recognise number, patterns, and shapes. They use maths concepts to make sense of their world and connect these concepts with their environment and everyday activities. For example, when playing, children may sort or choose toys according to size, shape, weight or colour.
While much of the teaching of concepts and skills to support numeracy happens in the mathematics learning area, it is strengthened as students take part in activities that connect their learning in the mathematics classroom within the context of other curriculum areas.
As they move through their years of schooling, students are exposed to mathematical:
- problem solving
These capabilities allow students to respond to familiar and unfamiliar situations by employing mathematics to make informed decisions and solve problems efficiently.
There is also evidence that other areas of development, such as resilience and perseverance, support achievement in numeracy.
Mathematics gives students access to important mathematical ideas, knowledge and skills. Numeracy connects this learning with their personal and work lives. Numeracy has an increasingly important role in enabling and sustaining cultural, social, economic and technological advances.
Numeracy across the curriculum
Being numerate involves more than mastering basic mathematics. Numeracy involves connecting the mathematics that students learn at school with the out-of-school situations that require the skills of problem solving, critical judgement, and sense-making related to applied contexts.
At Meridian High School the development of numeracy is important as it will support students when progressing into the real world. We develop the numeracy of our students through weekly maths challenges, decoding questions, building in problem solving and staff development.