Maths and Creativity

Tackling Underachievement Through Creativity in the Primary Mathematics Curriculum

‘centred around the idea of students ‘becoming a mathematician’ and supporting them in working on noticing pattern, making conjectures and finding counter-examples’

The aim of this project was to support students who are underachieving in mathematics, through a focus on the creative processes of the subject. What we took creativity to mean, in this context, was:

Students asking their own questions
Students following their own lines of enquiry Students choosing their own methods of representation
Students noticing patterns
Students making predictions or conjectures

The project was a collaboration between the University of Bristol and the charity “5x5x5=creativity” (5x5x5, see Bancroft et al., 2008). One prompt for this work was the idea of trying out a mathematics based 5x5x5 project, where instead of an artist going into schools, Alf would act as a mathematician and aim to provoke mathematical thinking and creativity. Penny Hay (Director of Research, 5x5x5=creativity) would act as a mentor on the project.


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