Interactive On-line Programme for Young People with Exceptional Ability

Article by Lynne McClure

Interactive on-line Programme for Young People with Exceptional Ability

The Templeton funding opens up opportunities for us to reconsider aspects of our core work in a different light. Over the past few years the team has worked to ensure that the public perception of NRICH has gradually changed: originally NRICH was a site for interested and able young people to explore mathematics other than that they met at school. Over the recent years NRICH has moved to being a site mainly for teachers but also for young people, and now catering for students in the whole range of ability. The Templeton Projects have a distinct focus on students of exceptional ability, which means that we now want to maintain our inclusive nature whilst also catering in various ways for those of exceptional mathematical ability, and their teachers and parents. We are doing this, in addition to our core work, through:

  • adding in additional challenge to new problems where appropriate, and revisiting some recently written activities to do the same (see for example Plants)
  • writing new and very challenging activities especially at post-16 (see for example Black Box which introduces university level concepts related to number theory)
  • making explicit links between stage 3 and stage 4 problems to encourage exceptionally able students and their teachers to explore more challenging material (see for example Four Coloured Lights and A Little Light Thinking)
  • developing weekly challenges which give short and appealing questions based on A-level content but which also link to longer problems, AskNRICH and wider enrichment material. A celebratory article launching this made very fruitful connections between AskNRICH, where the questions were suggested, and the NRICH site itself.
  • developing a suite of activities to support transition to university courses in mathematical sciences
  • piloting a set of student blogs at each phase; these allow students to comment on problems on the NRICH site in order to promote interaction with the site through discussion
  • beginning to develop a library of articles for exceptional students, their teachers and parents, on exceptional ability, transition to university and career guidance
  • setting up a real and virtual network of teachers of students of exceptional ability

The whole suite of activities is intended to offer opportunities both for students working independently and for teachers. The teachers' notes and support accompanying all resources help teachers to access suitable activities to offer their most able students in the classroom. Although the Templeton Projects are focused on students above 11 years of age, we have decided to implement the project ideas throughout the whole of the site, including the primary phase.

 

Other linked NRICH pages

Supporting highly able mathematicians - who are they?

Supporting highly able mathematicians - for teachers

Supporting highly able mathematicians - for parents and carers

Supporting highly able mathematicians - resources for teachers

Supporting highly able mathematicians - resources for parents and carers

Supporting highly able mathematicians - academic research links