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Functional Elements and Problem Solving in GCSE Examinations Tony Fisher, Principal Examiner (GCSE Pilot and Functional Maths) Objectives To look at the assessment objectives for the new GCSE and how these link to functional elements and problem solving
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Tony Fisher, Principal Examiner (GCSE Pilot and Functional Maths)
GCSE examinations in mathematics are required to assess functional elements
Foundation 30 - 40%
Higher 20 - 30%
Functional elements are a subset of functional skills
Functional skills are learning tools that enable people to:
Functional skills qualifications in mathematics assess three interrelated process skills:
Questions that assess functional elements:
In addition, if categorised as AO2 or AO3, questions must be written in such a way that:
On this machine you lose 6 calories per minute.
On this machine you lose 9 calories per minute.
Write the ratio of the number of calories per minute lost on the rowing machine and cross trainer in simplest form.
Tom trains on both the rowing machine and cross trainer.
Work out a possible training plan so that Tom loses exactly 300 calories.
Look at Handout 1
The difficulty of a question is related to:
A farmer has some sheep.
80% of the sheep have lambs.
30% of the sheep who have lambs have one lamb.
45% of the sheep who have lambs have two lambs.
The rest of the sheep who have lambs have three lambs.
Altogether the sheep have 546 lambs.
How many sheep does the farmer have?
The present GCSE
The new GCSE
The bolt on approach (minimalist)
The integrated approach (aspirational)
Include problem solving in every lesson
In a lesson on area and perimeter ask students to
In a lesson on average and spread ask students to
Include regular problem solving lessons based on previous work
Look at the example on Handout 4
Look at the problem solving example on Handout 5
Try and introduce topics through a problem solving or a practical approach
Look at the example on Handout 6
This shows how students could learn trigonometry through a (guided) problem solving approach (without mentioning SOHCAHTOA)
Look at the ideas on Handout 7