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'I genuinely believe I have never taught mathematics better, and my students have never learned more. I just wish I had known all of this twelve years ago...'
Craig Barton is one of the UK's most respected teachers of mathematics. In his remarkable new book, he explains how he has delved into the world of academic research and emerged with a range of simple, practical, effective strategies that anyone can employ to save time and energy and have a positive impact on the long-term learning and enjoyment of students.
Craig presents the findings of over 100 books and research articles from the fields of Cognitive Science, Memory, Psychology and Behavioural Economics, together with the conversations he has had with world renowned educational experts on his Mr Barton Maths Podcast, and subsequent experiments with his students and colleagues.
About the author
Craig Barton has been teaching mathematics for 12 years. He is an Advanced Skills Teacher, the TES Maths Advsier, an AQA Expert Panel Member, creator of two of the country's most popular maths websites, and his teaching has been judged as Outstanding in four successive Ofsted inspections. He has written two maths textbooks, been lucky enough to work with students in hundreds of schools, and had the honour of delivering workshops to teachers all over the world.
''How I wish I’d taught maths' is an extraordinary and important book. Part guide to research, part memoir, part survival handbook, it’s a wonderfully accessible guide to the latest research on teaching mathematics, presented in a disarmingly honest and readable way. I know of no other book that presents as much usable research evidence on the dos and don’ts of mathematics teaching in such a clear and practical way. No matter how long you have been doing it, if you teach mathematics—from primary school to university—this book is for you.' Dylan Wiliam, Emeritus Professor of Educational Assessment, UCL
'How I wish I had taught maths' is a rare and wonderful book, one that could only have been written by someone with Craig’s devotion to teaching and willingness to become immersed in the research literature on how people learn. In clear, concrete, and compelling terms Craig illustrates evidence-based ways to upgrade mathematics instruction, ways that are often unintuitive and/or at odds with prevailing educational practices. It makes us wish that young people the world over might have the good fortune to find themselves in classes that incorporate Craig’s insights. In fact, whereas Craig writes, “I’ll be honest—this book has been created for maths teachers,” we think that Craig’s “lessons learned” can, with some creativity, enhance any teaching.' Robert A. Bjork and Elizabeth L. Bjork, Department of Psychology, University of California, Los Angeles
'It’s rare that we change our habits and beliefs once they are established - cognitive bias is strong in us. And that is what makes this book so exceptional. Craig describes not only what he’s learned from a methodical study of cognitive science but how he’s changed over time despite his initial success. There’s a joyful relentlessness to Craig’s study of teaching methods. He starts out telling us he wants to “know every detail,” and what makes the book so exceptional is just that- the way the story of how something he learned about teaching played out in a specific problem or lesson, was refined and improved. It’s an incredibly useful book for maths teachers especially but really for anyone who teaches and cares about getting it right.' Doug Lemov, former teacher and author of Teach like a Champion, @Doug_Lemov
'This is a really thoughtful and thought-provoking discussion of a series of important and practical questions about the best way to teach.' Daisy Christodoulou, author of 7 Myths about Education and Director of Education at No More Marking, @daisychristo
'This book has the potential to have a huge impact on the way maths is taught. It is so refreshing to see a maths teacher honestly critiquing their own practice and suggesting alternative approaches based on sound research and analysis. Craig's warm and relatable style of writing is a pleasure to read. His book is brought to life by hilarious anecdotes and humble reflections. Craig summarises the key points of the relevant research succinctly and his advice to teachers is perfectly pitched and instantly transferable to any maths classroom. For the sake of our current and future students, I certainly hope that this book becomes essential reading for maths teachers.' Jo Morgan, maths teacher and creator of resourceaholic.com, Twitter: @mathsjem
'How I wish I’d taught maths' is an honest and insightful reflection of Craig's years as a maths teacher. Through experience, podcasting others and reading broadly, Craig carefully considers every assumption he used to make when teaching maths - assumptions we all make or made. In each chapter he forensically analyses a theme from Explicit Instruction to, my favourite, Choice of Examples, expounding his old approach and backing up his new approach with rich examples and scholarly references. Written in the way he speaks - upbeat, humble and littered with "flippin' 'ecks" - Craig brings together so many aspects of maths teaching and so many shared assumptions that there's something in here for anyone involved in maths education, including teacher trainers, early career teachers and those with many years at the chalkface. Having read How I wish I’d taught maths I'll now be a considerably stronger practitioner. No doubt this will become the defining book on maths pedagogy for generations of maths teachers.' Bruno Reddy, Former Head of Maths at King Solomon Academy and creator of Times Tables Rockstars, Twitter: @MrReddyMaths
'This is one of the most useful books on maths instruction that I have read. Craig’s humility and honesty about his previous reasoning, and responses to received wisdom (and his own biases), invites the reader to examine their own preconceptions and blind spots. The volume of research behind his conclusions – and the down-to-earth summaries of its implications – make it accessible for anyone interested in maths teaching. His stories ring horribly true, encapsulating predictable errors made early (and late!) in a maths teacher’s career. I wish it had existed when I trained; I might have avoided making so many mistakes, and for so long! As the debate about ‘teacher standards’ gathers pace, this book is a timely contribution in answer to the question “What should we expect all teachers, as professionals, to know about the craft of teaching maths to children?” . I would not be surprised if this became compulsory reading for a range of PGCE courses and teacher inductions. Craig’s conclusions about how to help pupils learn interrogate the most fundamental aspects of how we think about teaching, regardless of curriculum area.' Dani Quinn, Head of Maths at Michaela Community School, Twitter: @danicquinn
'Evidence-fueled, down-to-earth, and hugely practical. The book we maths teachers have all been waiting for.' Peps Mccrea, Associate Dean at the Institute for Teaching, Twitter: @pepsmccrea
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|No of pages||302|
|Publication Date||16 Nov 2017|