Sunday, 25 April 2010

How little vote do you need to become a PM?

My earlier election-related posts focus on literacy resources. Ever since I have been on the look out for election resources that could be used in numeracy or functional maths lessons.

After much fruitless searching, and no time to make my own resources, I was about to give up until an email alert from the wonderful NCETM (National Centre for Excellence in the Teaching of Mathematics) community discussion board saved the day. A regular poster, Chris1974, has shared his presentation 'on how little vote do you need to become PM'. He goes on to say that 'It's really a maths modelling activity, but it throws up some interesting questions'.

It certainly does: I love it! Just wish I could try it out myself on some learners but I'm not teaching any Level 1-2 Maths at the moment. Actually, I think the presentation could be used at Entry level too. It's so clearly presented that Entry level learners could, for example, be given the task of counting the number of pink, green or orange votes on each of the ten constituency screens (perhaps designing and then using a suitable tally chart to do this) whilst higher level learners could focus on the modelling and percentage / fraction aspects of the presentation.
However you choose to use the presentation it is bound to create much discussion.

Chris1974 has shared his presentation through Google documents (I'm not sure how this is done but it's very generous of him). If you click on the menu button at the bottom of the embedded screen above and then follow the blue 'election2010proportion' link next to the orange arrow you can view the presentation from the original source (rather than embedded in this blog post). You will then be able to access an 'action' button which allows you to download the resource as either a PDF or a PPT.

I occasionally participate on several of the NCETM discussion boards and I highly recommend that you take a look. It's a great place for stimulating discussion and sharing ideas. You will have to register with NCETM if you want to participate but anyone can view the threads on open discussion boards such as the Secondary Forum (where Chris1974's original post appeared) or the Maths Cafe (which is a great place to start).

I'll finish this post with a similar comment to the one I made in my post of April 18th: this resource is surely ideal for Functional Maths - as what can be more functional than understanding and participating in an election?

If you use this resource in your classes please share your ideas or observations by leaving a comment (or you can email me via Likewise if you have created or discovered other maths election resources.


Leia Fee (ITeC) said...

More advanced learners could follow that up with some activites using the BBC Election Seat Calculator, which has the real statics built into it.

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