Mathematics

Our aim as a department is to provide our pupils with a soundly based mathematical education in which high academic standards are emphasised so that pupils can achieve their potential.  

We try our best to prepare the pupils for the outside world so that they can use Mathematics confidently in real situations and in their studies at university and beyond.

Curriculum

Second Form

A number of pupils enter the school aged 12 and the aim is to cover topics similar to pupils who will be studying for Common Entrance. They are taught together in a mixed ability group with differentiated content. We put an emphasis on gaining a solid foundation in numerical and algebraic skills with investigations and puzzles to make mathematics interesting and fun. Extension work is provided for gifted mathematicians and extra support is available for those who find mathematics difficult.

Third Form

All pupils begin the GCSE syllabus in Third Form, which provides continuity and plenty of time to prepare thoroughly for obtaining a good grade in GCSE Mathematics by the time they sit the examination in Fifth Form. The Third Form year is spent making sure that the Foundation level GCSE topics are securely understood and that the pupil's algebra is well enough developed to cope with the algebraic content in higher tier GCSE in Fourth and Fifth Forms.

Fourth Form and Fifth Form

Currently all fourth and fifth pupils are prepared for the new 1Ma1 Edexcel Higher Tier GCSE Maths linear syllabus.  This also has a new grading system and is graded numerically from 9-1 rather than A*-E.
The top set in Fourth Form is accelerated through the GCSE course and sit their examination at the end of Fourth Form instead of at the end of Fifth Form as the rest of the sets do.  In Fifth Form the top set then starts more challenging work in the form of CCEA GCSE Further Mathematics.

A level

Sixth Form pupils study modules of Mathematics and Further Mathematics following the Edexcel Modular A level. Most years over half of the Sixth Form take Mathematics in 4 classes.

The Further Maths class, which is normally 10-12 pupils, take C1-C4, M1, S1 and FP1 in Lower 6th and then have access to a range of modules in Upper Sixth to make up the 12 modules required for Maths and Further Maths.  All 18 modules are on offer either in class or by supported self-study.

The remaining three classes taking A level Mathematics will study C1, C2 and S1 in Lower Sixth and C3, C4 and M1/S2 in Upper Sixth.

Able pupils are prepared for STEP examinations and Scholarship Mathematics.

Extra-curricular

Maths Challenges and Olympiads

Every year we enter a large number of pupils for the Senior and Intermediate Maths challenges.  Those who do well then go on to compete in the British Mathematical Olympiad or the Intermediate Olympiad.  The whole of second form is entered for the Junior Maths challenge.

The Glenalmond Mathematical Society

The Mathematical Society is aimed at our gifted and talented mathematicians in forms 3-5.  We meet once a week and look at problems well beyond the GCSE course including numerous Senior Maths Challenge problems.

Staff

Mr Gareth O'Neill, BSc, PGCE (Head of Department)
Mr Martin Orviss, BA MMath, PGCE
Mr Mike Jeffers, BSc, PGCE (Registrar)
Mrs Sarah Sinclair, BSc, PGCE (Director of Boarding)
Mr Patrick Erdal, BSc, PGCE
Mrs Sylvia Smith, BSc, PGCE

Miss Rachel Mullan, BSC, PGCE