Turn off that mobile phone!

Getting to sleep is often a problem for teenagers and consequently getting enough sleep is a challenge. One reason for this is the use of mobile phones during the evening. My advice is turn them off after 9pm, it will help a great deal.

There may be trouble ahead

It is well known that the number of teachers entering training is falling. I hear anecdotal evidence of a shortage of maths teachers in our schools. We also hear about the numbers of European professionals coming to this country declining. Recruiting and training enough teachers may take years to redress the balance. In the meantime our children may well be taught subjects such as maths by teachers who are trained in other subjects. With more “rigorous GCSE exams” who is going to teach these?

I’m rubbish at maths!

I hear this a lot from parents whose children struggle with maths.

Ask yourself these questions:
1. By saying this am I helping myself?
2. Am I helping my child?
3. How can I best help them?

It may be that helping yourself is the best way. We are available for free support to parents. You only have to ask.

Free maths resources

The internet has opened the door to hundreds of free resource websites which can be of great benefit to the maths student. One I would like to highlight is Corbett maths. It has a rich variety of resources from the excellent 5 a day at different levels (from primary to higher GCSE) to videos and worksheets covering most topics. Mr Corbett has an engaging manner and explains maths concepts in a very understandable way. Highly recommended.

SATs – don’t get in a tizz

Some of the parents who come into our centre are very worried about SATs and how important they are. Well, they are important to the school especially for its OFSTED rating and ultimately funding. They can be good for a child’s self esteem, but they are not the most important thing about a child’s education.


My advice is: do your best, support your child but ease back on the pressure. It’s not the end of the world. In my experience most secondary schools don’t put too much weight on the results. So enjoy Year 6, it’s a great time!

Maths for parents

I am often asked by parents how they can support their child when doing maths exams especially when it is beyond their own level of maths. I wonder if it might be better to teach parents rather than children how to add fractions or solve quadratic equations. In that way they can support them when their homework is very difficult.


How many of you would like to do some maths classes for parents? It would be free and in very small groups. Any takers?

The school run

Saturday blog


Once a week I take my grandson to school which involves a 10 minute walk.


Along the way we are overtaken by scooters, parents talking to each other and parents often on their phones. I always try to make the walk of some interest, there is always something happening around you. It could be the weather, a plane in the sky, the moon still out in the early morning, birds, trees coming into blossom, catkins, leaves falling (depending on the season). It may even be an interesting vehicle on the road. There is always something to learn and it is continually changing.


Many people walk around with no awareness of what is going on in the world. Life is happening all around and we need to be observant otherwise it will pass us by.