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16 Reviews
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great ideas!
I only received my copy of the book this morning, but I know that it's going to prove invaluable. I've quickly skipped through the first section - place value - and aready I'm itching to get planning! It's packed full of easily resourced, easy to understand games for pairs and small groups. I am envisaging being able to set independent groups off on these tasks while I...
Published on 15 Aug. 2011 by KS2 teacher

versus
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Think of the trees!
Being honest, I expected a lot more from this book-especially after reading reviews on here that this would be a useful book for picking up lots of interesting ideas for maths teaching activities-something which as an NQT I was really keen to brush up on.

I have a few main issues with this book:

1. EVERY activity requires a photocopied grid which...
Published on 8 Mar. 2012 by cup_of_tea


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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great ideas!, 15 Aug. 2011
This review is from: Classroom Gems: Games, Ideas and Activities for Primary Mathematics (Paperback)
I only received my copy of the book this morning, but I know that it's going to prove invaluable. I've quickly skipped through the first section - place value - and aready I'm itching to get planning! It's packed full of easily resourced, easy to understand games for pairs and small groups. I am envisaging being able to set independent groups off on these tasks while I work with a focus group.
All the ideas come with a suggested key stage, a list of aims (L.O.s by any other name), a simple list of resouces and simple instructions.
There are sections for: Place Value, Addition, Subtraction, Multiplication, Division, Logical Reasoning, Number Tricks, Mixed Problems, Investigations and Brain-Teasers.
I wish I'd bought this book last year while I was an NQT, but at least I have it in my cupboard for this year. From looking at the place value section alone, I'd thoroughly recommend this book to primary teachers who want a ready-made bank of simple games and activities for pairs, individuals and small groups.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Exceptionally helpful for experienced teachers and NQTs alike, 25 May 2010
This review is from: Classroom Gems: Games, Ideas and Activities for Primary Mathematics (Paperback)
A clearly laid-out book in which activities and tips have been given in concise chunks. Activities are given for each area of the Mathematics curriculum and hints and tips as to how to adapt them for a varied classroom are plenty, with extension questions and activity ideas given in detail. As an NQT, I have found this series invaluable to dip into, and have shared them experienced teachers who have also found new and interesting teaching ideas within. A great present for those entering the primary classroom - particularly if, like me, Maths is a frightening area!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Ideas for Primary Maths!, 28 May 2010
By 
Ms. E. R. Arnold (UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Classroom Gems: Games, Ideas and Activities for Primary Mathematics (Paperback)
I read this book as a Student teacher looking for ways to make maths fun in my classroom and found it very helpful. The layout was clear and easy to understand, and I thought it was great how it was split up (approximately) into year groups so that it was easier to look for the right activities for my class. This book if great if, as a teacher, you aren't confident with maths yourself as it gives ideas to make maths more enjoyable for everyone. Would definately reccommend this book to teachers and student teachers!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Really helpful for teachers with little experience, 15 Aug. 2011
This review is from: Classroom Gems: Games, Ideas and Activities for Primary Mathematics (Paperback)
The general consensus is that, as a teacher, you are either good at Literacy, or you are good at Maths. I've heard that it is very rare to find a teacher who is gifted to teach both subjects equally well. If you are just like me, and find maths a doddle to teach, but lack the creativity to make Numeracy "fun" then this book is ideal. I consulted this book almost daily to provide my more able maths pupils with more fun and creative mental and oral starters, with great results. Some activities in this book are actually quite challenging!

The book is well organised and easy to navigate through, complete with learning outcomes/objectives, and there are suggestions on how to make each activity suitable for your ability/age set (differentiation).

In a nutshell: a handy little book that will really make life easier!

Will be investing in other books from the Classroom Gems series!
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Think of the trees!, 8 Mar. 2012
This review is from: Classroom Gems: Games, Ideas and Activities for Primary Mathematics (Paperback)
Being honest, I expected a lot more from this book-especially after reading reviews on here that this would be a useful book for picking up lots of interesting ideas for maths teaching activities-something which as an NQT I was really keen to brush up on.

I have a few main issues with this book:

1. EVERY activity requires a photocopied grid which usually needs to be shared between 2 children...maybe this is just me but this seems a terrible waste of paper. You also need to access these grids off of some website...so bear in mind this is certainly not a book to 'dip into' for quick starters.

2. On the subject of resources, many of the activities require, (bearing in mind most of the suggested activities are between just 2 children) a grid, 2 sets of digit cards 0-9, die...sometimes even a pack of playing cards! For me this really does not seem to take into account the practicalities of managing so many resources between a class of 30, especially when a fair amount of activities really only seem suited as 5-10 minute starters.

3. True, every activity does have tips on how to differentiate/extend the task-but amongst some fairly credible suggestions lie many suggestions that are more than a little tenuous and don't seem to hold much educational value. 'If you roll a 4-miss a turn', maybe it's just me but I struggle to see the point in doing so sometimes.

4. 'Cross-curricular links to inspire creativity across the curriculum'. Having read through most of the book I have yet to find even one suggestion for a cross-curricular link.

I can't be too harsh here, I've gone through a lot of the book and I have bookmarked perhaps 15 activities, although I have had to alter the suggestions a little-though all part of being a teacher I suppose.

Anyway, all I would suggest is looking into other books which focus on maths activities, starters and the like, as this falls a quite short of the mark in my opinion...
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1.0 out of 5 stars Uninspiring, 5 April 2013
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This review is from: Classroom Gems: Games, Ideas and Activities for Primary Mathematics (Paperback)
I have only had the book a couple of hours but have managed to make my way through a lot.

The tasks inside are extremely boring and should not be referred to as 'classroom gems'

Another reviewer made these excellent points that summarise other issues:

1. EVERY activity requires a photocopied grid which usually needs to be shared between 2 children...maybe this is just me but this seems a terrible waste of paper. You also need to access these grids off of some website...so bear in mind this is certainly not a book to 'dip into' for quick starters.

2. On the subject of resources, many of the activities require, (bearing in mind most of the suggested activities are between just 2 children) a grid, 2 sets of digit cards 0-9, die...sometimes even a pack of playing cards! For me this really does not seem to take into account the practicalities of managing so many resources between a class of 30, especially when a fair amount of activities really only seem suited as 5-10 minute starters.

3. True, every activity does have tips on how to differentiate/extend the task-but amongst some fairly credible suggestions lie many suggestions that are more than a little tenuous and don't seem to hold much educational value. 'If you roll a 4-miss a turn', maybe it's just me but I struggle to see the point in doing so sometimes.

4. 'Cross-curricular links to inspire creativity across the curriculum'. Having read through most of the book I have yet to find even one suggestion for a cross-curricular link.
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3.0 out of 5 stars There is much better out there, 15 Aug. 2013
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This review is from: Classroom Gems: Games, Ideas and Activities for Primary Mathematics (Paperback)
I purchased this book two years ago and find seldom use for it. The book is split into different areas of maths and does contain a large bank of activities to use in the classroom. It mixes both KS1 and KS2 with many apparently suitable for both. The multiplication games are decent enough and there are a few interesting activities which I would suggest would make handy starters or plenaries. However, these activities do not appear to be very flexible and tire easily.

The book is also a little cumbersome to follow. With no index and KS1 and KS2 mixed together, it can sometimes be a little frustrating when trying to look quickly for a suitable activity.

A suggested by a previous reviewer, many of the activities require a lot of paper-based resources. Much of my experience in schools indicates that frivolous paper waste has been clamped down and; this book does not lend it self to paper saving!

Many of the activities have a limited shelf life and once completed, they appear to be limited in how they can be extended to other areas of maths. Ultimately, when you spend money on these books, it should be to increase your repertoire of appropriate tasks; unfortunately this book does not deliver.

It might suit and NQT, however I would suggest that scouring the Internet would be a much more valuable resource and more cost effective.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Easy to find the perfect activity, 2 Dec. 2011
This review is from: Classroom Gems: Games, Ideas and Activities for Primary Mathematics (Paperback)
This book has a very clear index where you can find exactly what maths skills you will practice in that chapter. There are also fun and exciting ideas which will really stimulate discussion in the classroom and awake the less motivated students. I have used some of the activities with different grades and the children have really appreciated the lessons. A favourite one has been the Palindromic numbers which has lead students to further and spontaneous exploring of numbers. Definitely a great buy!Games, Ideas and Activities for Primary Mathematics (Classroom Gems)
I also recommend Maths on Fire and Problem Solving by the same author.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Great book...but where is the dedicated website?, 7 Oct. 2012
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This review is from: Classroom Gems: Games, Ideas and Activities for Primary Mathematics (Paperback)
This book (actually, the whole series), offers a fantastic range of ideas and challenges to stimulate conversations about maths in my Grade 3 classroom. My only problem is that, although the author mentions a dedicated website (supposedly with all the worksheets ready to print and go) in the introduction, I cannot find an acutal URL for this website, and google doesn't throw up anything. The Pearson website is not helpful, either.
I would recommend the book for ideas, but be prepared to make up the necessary worksheets...
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4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting, lively ideas, 1 Sept. 2013
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This review is from: Classroom Gems: Games, Ideas and Activities for Primary Mathematics (Paperback)
Some really great ideas that I think the children will enjoy.
Some preparation required but not too onerous!
Useful that it gives a recommendation for age range and I really like the variations and challenge suggestions.
Might be useful to have some proformas at the back of blank grids etc
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