Teacher Tip Series: Maths with Janet Leeke

30/04/20246 minute read
Teacher Tip Series: Maths with Janet Leeke
This blog series offers a window into the experiences and insights of Crimson Global Academy's esteemed educators, providing valuable advice for students across different levels, debunking common subject misconceptions, and suggesting effective study strategies.

Get to know Janet Leeke, CGA's Mathematics teacher from Northampton, UK. Janet shares her teaching philosophy, her passion for mathematics, and offers her strategies for success in class. With her extensive teaching experience Janet gives advice on how students can maintain enthusiasm while studying online.

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Q & A with Ms Leeke

Q: What inspired you to become a teacher in this subject area?

All through school I loved mathematics. I studied it at university and never grew tired of it. When I graduated, I became an Assistant Management Accountant, but felt that I missed maths too much and so I decided to become a teacher and teach it instead.

Q: As an expert in Mathematics what key advice would you give to students to excel in this subject?

Practice! Practice! Practice! You do not need to learn fact after fact, but you do need to master the methods used in solving problems. Only by doing lots and lots of questions will you master a topic. Also, read the questions carefully - mathematicians love to trick you by asking questions in strange ways.

Q: What are some common misconceptions or challenges that students face in Maths and how can they overcome them?

Many people think algebra is difficult, but it isn’t. Algebra can actually help you to solve the most difficult of questions. Never think you can’t do mathematics, you can. Understand what is being asked of you and check that your answer makes sense.

Q: What study strategies do you recommend for students to retain and apply knowledge effectively?

As I suggested earlier, you need to practice as much as you can. One question can be asked in a multitude of ways so you need to familiarise yourself with all of these possibilities. Frequent practice of questions in different variations will help you during exam time.

Q: Are there any specific resources or tools that you find particularly helpful for students studying ?

We are very fortunate in that mathematicians like to put resources online and make them available for free. There are so many out there. Never use the solution finders as they do not help you learn. Instead use the resources and understand the topics.

Q: How can students develop a passion for Maths and stay motivated throughout their academics?

Never let a problem get the better of you. Try and figure it out and understand it. Also, just because you cannot do one part of mathematics does not mean you can’t do it all. As with any skill, mastering takes time. Be easy on yourself.

Q: How can parents support their children's learning in Maths outside of the classroom?

They should never say “I wasn’t very good at mathematics”. Instead help the children by looking at the problems with them and try to apply logic and reasoning. This support from parents help the student feel more confident and motivated with the subject.

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Mathematics at CGA

Whether you love the challenge of dissecting a maths equation, or looking to get into a career in Accounting or Finance, CGA provides a range of math courses specific to your goals and interests. Here are some of our popular offerings:

Pre-Calculus: This course delves into various function families including polynomial, exponential, logarithmic, logistic, and trigonometric. Students will use these functions to model real-world scenarios and solve relevant problems, enhancing their analytical skills.

Calculus BC: This advanced course covers differential and integral calculus, exploring concepts like parametric, polar, and vector functions, and series. It emphasizes the connection between mathematical representations and justifies solutions through proper reasoning, notation, and language.

Further Mathematics: Building upon GCSE Mathematics, this course extends students' mathematical skills and techniques, fostering a robust foundation for further academic pursuits and a deep appreciation for mathematics.

Primary Math: Designed for children aged 7-10, this course introduces advanced multiplication, division, and foundational concepts of fractions. Students will learn to analyze and classify geometric figures based on properties such as parallel and perpendicular sides, angle measures, and symmetry.