How St George's is leading the way in the problematic subject of Maths

Wednesday, 06 Dec 2023

The following article, by Bethany Hiatt in The West Australian on 6 December, highlights how St George's is leading the way nationally by using our unique city setting to elevate students' confidence and abilities in Maths.

St Georges Ahead of the Game in Mathematics The West Australian 6 Dec 2023

While one in four Australian teenagers struggle with basic maths skills, the nation’s proportion of top performers is above the international average, Ms Hiatt writes.

The latest global report card from the Program for International Student Assessment reveals that at 12 per cent, the number of Australian students who could solve complex problems is above the global average of 9 per cent.

Last year’s assessment had a greater emphasis on maths, with half of the two-hour computer-based test allocated to the subject. Questions tested students’ ability to apply knowledge to real-life scenarios, such as converting prices into a different currency or comparing distances across alternative routes. Students also answered questions about their attitudes to school and learning.

City students
Maths students Wil and Audrey between lessons the city.

One in four Australian teens reported that discipline in their maths classes was not conducive to learning, while 33 per cent said others were not listening to what the teacher said. But while many appear to be struggling with the subject, maths is not a source of angst for students at St George’s Anglican Grammar School in the heart of the Perth CBD.

“(The school) uses its unique city setting for activities such as calculating building heights using inclinometers and examining discount distributions in nearby retail stores,” Head of Curriculum Anthony Bochrinis said.

“Math assessments blend skill-measuring tests with projects that encourage critical thinking, inquiry, collaboration, and communication, preparing students to confidently use mathematics as a lifelong, valuable tool.”

Mr Bochrinis said experienced teachers played a crucial role in making maths engaging, running a “maths reasoning club” outside school hours where students collaborate on complex problems. 

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