Tag: Rebecca Hanson

Commentary on the “Fascinating Little Life Hack for Percentages”

07 May 19
Rebecca Hanson
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This tweet has had many views and shares and has been much discussed

“x% of y = y% of x. So, for example, if you needed to work out 4% of 75 in your head, just flip it….”

Jen Rogers of Oxford University and the Royal Statistical Society was asked to comment on it on ‘More or Less’ (https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/m0004md0 at 17:25).  It had come as a big shock to her and her fellow mathematicians. 

This was certainly well known in my classrooms.  I remembered being startled when a student first came up with it and, at first, I came up with the same explanation Jan gives.

But over time I found a much simpler and more elegant proof which is simply that ‘of’ is the same as multiplied by. So if you accept the commutativity of multiplication (so elegantly demonstrated through array – arranging objects in rectangles) then this is just obvious…….

If it doesn’t sound obvious then please be reassured that it did take me many long online discussions over several years to completely convince myself that ‘of is multiply’ throughout primary maths and well beyond and that array explains all multiplication and division at that level. 

This understanding of multiplication and division was to form the basis of my PhD in maths education. But when it became clear that no research into maths education would be taken into consideration in the development of policy it seemed wiser to devote my time to political campaigning rather than on pushing back the frontiers of knowledge. Fortunately the former has not come at the expense of the latter, but sadly it has denied me my doctorate.

Pre-launch News

25 Sep 13
Rebecca Hanson
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Authentic Maths is due to launch in October 2013

Authentic Maths will offer primary schools in West and North Cumbria the opportunity to participate in professional development which will allow them to take the mathematics component of the new primary curriculum in their stride.

Authentic Maths will also provide support for parents and other adults who work with children on their primary maths.  Support can be offered to teachers and adults in all areas by Skype.

Authentic Maths will provide a free information service through this blog which will provide news on national policy and interesting resources and initiatives as well as free resources with notes for primary level maths.

Authentic Maths will commence operation as the sole trading business of Rebecca Hanson.  Rebecca has taught in four schools and, as a secondary head of maths, led a substantial  positive transformation in results.  Rebecca has lectured in mathematics education at Manchester Metropolitan University and supervises PGCE students for the OU.  She has also completed substantial national level freelance work in mathematics education.

Rebecca has a Masters Degree from Cambridge in Mathematics and Management as well as a PGCE from St. Martins and a Masters in Education from the Open University.  She has completed the training for mathematics advisers supporting primary schools with the development of arithmetic proficiency which has been provided to support the new primary curriculum by the National Centre for Excellence in the Teaching of Mathematics (NCETM) and she is an NCETM Professional Development Accredited Lead.