Every Thursday morning when Year 4 arrive at St Mary’s Primary School in Timsbury for a session of Bath Rugby’s Tackling Numbers, they ask their Class Teacher Hannah Smythe: “Is it Rugby Maths today?”
“That’s what they call it,” Hannah says, “they absolutely love it!”
When visiting Year 4 at St Mary’s this week, I soon picked up on the enthusiasm for the ‘Tackling Numbers’ way of learning. Bath Rugby’s Community Coach, Jack Howden, was busy delivering this brilliant six week programme, put together by MBNA and Premiership Rugby to motivate and encourage children to enjoy maths.
The programme is about learning the intricacies of numbers through the medium of sport. Measuring rugby pitches, calculating scores from matches, measuring your own height and handspan and comparing them to real life sized rugby players, are just some of the fun rugby related activities for them to look forward to.
The first hour of this third session took place in the classroom followed by an hour spent outside in the snow learning the skills of rugby along with throwing snowballs!
Jack told me: “Today we have been collecting data from the children’s favourite skills such as passing, tagging and dodging. From this we have created bar graphs, pictograms and tally charts to reflect the information collected.”
Speaking again to Hannah, she said: “They really enjoy it and it’s great to see them engaging with all the activities. It’s good for them because it enables them to see maths in a real life context rather than just maths in the classroom.”
Tacking Numbers is a great way to help youngsters to look at maths in a different way. Whether they are measuring the pitch or collecting data for their bar graphs, it’s all terrific fun.
Roll on next week’s ‘Rugby Maths!’