How pupils at a South Tyneside school are making maths lessons rock

South Shields School pupils do maths to music.
South Shields School pupils do maths to music.

Budding mathematicians are rocking through their times-tables thanks to an upbeat programme at a South Tyneside school.

Students at South Shields School are being helped to find the right rhythm with numbers through a new scheme.

The rock music stimulates their interest

Janey Stubbs

Rock music sets the pace in a trial of times-tables which they have to complete as fast as they can.

Three challenges have to be completed in 20 minute sessions held twice a week with the accolades being awarded for those students who get the most sums right in the shortest period of time.

Students who perform the best also become mentors during advisory time for the children who prove less able.

The project is part of a raft of innovative programmes introduced at South Shields School to boost opportunities in learning for young people.

Assistant headteacher for achievement, Janey Stubbs, said: “These mastery sessions really motivate our Year 7 and 8 students.

“The rock music stimulates their interest and the whole process is proving to be an invaluable way to provide them with the skills for problem solving.”

Literacy mastery sessions are also helping students with their grammar skills and rules of reading.

Twenty minute sessions cover areas such as the use of capitals, nouns, apostrophes and clauses.

They also involve spelling tests and students record everything in their grammar books, which then become a resource to be used in English lessons.

Ms Stubbs said: “This is working excellently and the students have done really well.

“It is fun and introduces a healthy element of competition as we have a leader board and tests students’ knowledge, which all works to keep them on task.”