Comenius

Comenius Project – Maths in Everyday Life

Introduction

Following the success of our last project, we received confirmation in July that we had been successful in our application for a new Comenius Project based around the theme of ‘Maths in Everyday life’.  This was very exciting news and meant that we would be working with partners in Poland, Turkey, Romania and Sicily.  We were also given a generous grant from the EU to fund travel for our students and staff to these partner schools.

Partner schools

Our partners are from

  •        Olawa, Poland
  •        Denizli, Turkey
  •        Pascani, Romania
  •        Sicily, Italy

The Theme

The theme is intended to encourage schools to promote the importance of Maths in everyday life and encourage students to recognise its importance in a variety of applications.  There are a number of specific projects and tasks that will be completed by all partner schools in common.  A variety of curriculum areas will be involved including Science, Geography, Psychology and PE, as well as Maths.  In November, students across all schools took part in a Maths Challenge.  This culminated in a final competition when our partner schools visited us in December. 

The Autumn Term

The two big events in the autumn term were a visit to Poland in October and Westwood’s hosting of all the partner schools in December

Visit to Poland,  October 2011.

Four year 12 students visited our partner school in Olawa, Poland and they were accompanied by Mr Morgan.  All of the other partner schools were visiting Poland at the same time, so it was a genuinely multi cultural experience.  Our students stayed with host families for most of the time, but they also had the wonderful opportunity to visit Kracow in an overnight tour, which is one of the most beautiful cities in Europe.

During the visit, students attended lessons at our host school and it was a fascinating insight into the nature of teaching and learning in another country.  There were certainly some differences in approach.  Our students were also required to give a presentation on how Maths is taught in the UK.  This was obviously quite a wide brief and they did an excellent job and their presentation was very well received. 

Some of the highlights of the visit were the tour of Kracow, a visit to a cavernous salt mine and visiting the birthplace of John Paul II in Katowice.

Westwood Hosting Event, December 2011

All of our partner schools visited Westwood in December 2011.  There was relief when all of our partners arrived – from four different countries all on the same day.  Something of a logistical miracle.

 It was a very hectic schedule and they were given a good insight into our cultural heritage during their stay.  The programme included a walking tour of Leek, a visit to Old Trafford and Manchester City Centre, a visit to London and a visit to Chatsworth.  The social highlight of the visit was a Barn Dance on the Friday night held at Westwood.  This was also attended by Westwood Staff and Students.  The music was provided by Cuckoos Nest and it was a lovely social occasion and really helped the different nationalities to get to know each other.  There was also a bowling competition held on one evening. 

During the visit, students took part in a Maths Challenge competition organised by our Maths department.  All students taking part did very well, but the Polish school’s students emerged as the overall winners. 

On the Sunday, the host students and their partners along with foreign staff visited London by train.  Mr Warrington led a fascinating and informative tour for 45 people of all the main sites.  Once again, it was quite challenging to move everyone around on the Tube, but we didn’t lose anyone the whole time we were there! 

Overall we can look back on a very busy, but very exciting and fulfilling term of activity in our new project.  And there are more exciting events to come.

Coming Soon…

In March there will be a visit to our partner school in Denizli, Turkey. 

Next October, we will visit Sicily.

In March 2013, we will visit Romania. 

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