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Ideas and Inspiration

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Intergalactic Adventure

Intergalactic Adventure

Ready for another mathematical adventure? Complete your Intergalactic Passport Application Form and prepare for a journey to the Planet Turasmara.

Watch this space for more maths fun from the Scottish Mathematical Council with new challenges released each month.

Can you fit all of your cargo into your spaceship? How will you get the creatures of Turasmara safely across the river without them eating each other?

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Maths Ceilidh

How can we use music and dance to explore mathematical concepts? We teamed up with Science Ceilidh to find out.

Get your dancing shoes on and explore symmetry through ceilidh dance. You only need four people (or four objects for a table top version!) and a small square of space.

Lewis and Caity from Science Ceilidh show us how it is done.

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Driving is a Risky Business with Dr Laura Bonnett

Road safety is vital for everyone.Whether we drive or cycle, catch the bus or walk, we are all affected by driving – and the policies surrounding it. How do we therefore decide whether people with long-term medical conditions should be offered driving licenses?

Dr Laura Bonnett, a medical statistician at the University of Liverpool and the Royal Statistical Society’s William Guy lecturer for 2020, will seek to answer this question for people who have had epileptic seizures.

This talk was recorded during Maths Week Scotland 2020. It is suitable for Upper Secondary pupils and includes

  • Probability
  • Percentages
  • Estimates
  • Risk thresholds
  • Confidence intervals
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Royal Statistical Society: Irn Bru Data Collection

The Think Stats activity get learners thinking about how information is collected and introduces some simple approaches to visualise the data that they have collected.

Using a data collection app, students will be be introduced to bar charts, dot plots and pie charts. This is suitable for Second Level pupils

They can get creative and produce their own data visualisations to find out how their class really feels about Irn Bru...

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Treasure Trails and Escape Rooms


Suitable for First and Second Level

You can turn your home into an escape room with this code solving game made by Anderston Primary School for Maths Week Scotland 2019.

If you live near Anderston or Kelvingrove Park, turn your daily walk into an adventure solving problems and finding clues with treasure trails created by Anderston Primary School. Find out how via the Anderston Primary School Website below.

Have you created your own for your local area? Share with us @MathsWeekScot on Twitter or via email info@mathsweek.scot.

Children need to be accompanied by an adult and social distancing measure observed at all times.

Funding for the trails were from the Maths Week Scotland Small Grants Fund. Content for the day developed by school staff with support from the Parent Council.

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University of Edinburgh Strategy Games

Suitable for Second, Third and Fourth Level

Use strategy games and transport network to explore maths in the classroom.

These videos and puzzles look to develop mathematical thinking and problem solving skills. Each includes tips and advice for how to complete.

Find them here.

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University of Edinburgh Maths Week at Work

Suitable for Third and Fourth Level

Join a video game programmer, actuary, transport planner and academic as they discuss how they use maths in their jobs.

Each video features a maths problem faced by them in their careers to try and solve.

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Women in Maths

Maths Week Scotland interviewed women for whom maths is at the core of their job. Whether it is statistics, bridges or budgets these women rely on maths every single day.

Kids (and adults!) often struggle to identify why maths is useful unless they want to be a maths teacher or banker. Watch these videos together and talk about how maths is important in a huge range of jobs - whatever your interest!

Climate Change and Mathematics
Maths in Climate Change

Suitable for S4

Climate Change is one of the biggest issues that we are currently facing, but did you know that there is actually a lot of maths behind it? Check out these resources by the University of Edinburgh to see some of the number crunching that Climate Scientists do in their fight to save our planet! The resources are suitable for S4+ students, and can be found here.

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Bookbug Sessions

Bookbug Mathsweek resources

Use resources developed by The Scottish Book Trust to embed numeracy into early years activities. This resources contains ideas for activities, songs and rhymes to help plan fun sessions with a numeracy focus.

Counting songs and rhymes, finger counting and props can help reinforce number sequences, physical values of numbers and children's overall awareness of numbers.

STEM Ambassador
Primary STEM Ambassador Training

A chance for primary teachers and STEM Ambassadors to meet and discuss maths and future collaborations

The session is part of Maths Week Scotland and is open to STEM Ambassadors and teachers (primary only).

This networking session aims to give attendees the chance to meet other people interested in Maths Week Scotland, discuss and share ideas and plan potential future collaborations.

Secondary teacher session runs on 1st October.

Book on Eventbrite

STEM Ambassador
Secondary STEM Ambassador Training

A chance for secondary teachers and STEM Ambassadors to meet and discuss maths and future collaborations.

The session is part of Maths Week Scotland and is open to STEM Ambassadors and teachers (secondary only).

This networking session aims to give attendees the chance to meet other people interested in Maths Week Scotland, discuss and share ideas and plan potential future collaborations.

Primary school session is running on 29th September.

Book on Eventbrite


Case Study
Disaster Relief Day

Disaster Relief day challenged students from Kilchrenan Primary, Achaleven Primary and Barcaldine Primary to work against the clock on a series of activities themed around an international disaster relief rescue mission. Although presented as a fictional scenario a sense of urgency and drama was created with authentic posters, presentation of activities and timed events.

Pupils used numeracy, reasoning, creative and social skills to solve problems including Designing a Rescue Vehicle, Moving Supplies, Recording a TV Appeal and Loading Planes.

Funding for transport for the schools and materials were from the Maths Week Scotland Small Grants Fund. Content for the day developed by school staff.

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The children were able to achieve a challenge using ‘their’ maths. They had fun doing it. They saw it fit into the world in new ways, real ways. What was wonderful was to see maths achievement on the faces of the children, that came from the knowledge that they had ‘done it’ with maths!
Case Study
Enigma machine


Secondary schools in Angus all got to experience a real enigma machine with a visit from the Bletchley Park Team. They got hands on with cracking codes, and inspired by stories of the role of mathematicians in the Second World War.

Mr Peter Todd organised the week of workshops and talks with all secondary schools in the area, with funding from the Scottish Government and the Edinburgh Mathematical Society.

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The impact from the visit has been huge. Every time Thomas went to a school there was a queue of teachers waiting to see the Enigma machine. How often do students get to see teachers genuinely enthused and interested about something in the school? I think the event had a massive impact on student interest in Mathematics and in particular codebreaking.
Case Study
Maths in...


Maths Week Scotland had a different theme each day in these schools, with Maths in Art and Maths in ICT kicking off the week!

It wasn’t just for the pupils though. Parents got messy baking treats midweek, using maths to measure and weight their way to Rocky Road success. The week ended with Maths Outside and cross-year group challenges using natural materials and shapes in nature.

Pupils really enjoyed finding maths everywhere and great fun exploring maths.

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