Mrs Joanne Trimble (Head of Maths)
Mrs Suzanne Jackson
Mrs Sarah McColgan
Mr Gareth McCrossan
Mr Adam Buchanan (Job Share)
‘I know this world is ruled by infinite intelligence. Everything that surrounds us- everything that exists - proves that there are infinite laws behind it. There can be no denying this fact. It is mathematical in its precision.’
- Thomas A. Edison
The Mathematics Department at Omagh Academy is a strong and successful team of four full-time teachers. We are committed to the teaching of active, thought provoking Mathematics with the aim to develop mathematical skills and personal capabilities of all pupils. Regular sharing of good practice and continuous professional development ensure pupils have access to modern teaching strategies and exposure to the least forms of technology available.
Aims of the Department
At Omagh Academy we aim to make learning Mathematics an enjoyable experience in a warm, friendly and orderly classroom atmosphere - an environment which will make a significant difference to their motivation and overall achievement in mathematics. To help us and the pupils reach their full potential, staff will always attempt to make mathematics challenging, demanding high standards of work from all and relevant in today’s world.
The Department provides a broad coverage of the content of the NI Curriculum and follows CCEA examination specifications at Key Stages 3, 4 & 5. This provides a secure basis for the progressive acquisition of knowledge and skills by the pupils. Click on the tabs below for further information.
Facilities & Resources
The Mathematics department is well resourced with four well equipped, adjacent classrooms, a departmental resource room and two large store rooms. ICT plays an important role within the department, with each classroom enjoying the use of interactive whiteboards enabling teachers to use a range of interesting software utilizing different teaching strategies, all of which enhance the opportunities for our students.
At all levels, the department has identified, within carefully planned schemes of work incorporating well thought-out activities. Frequent use of ICT and other teaching strategies such as practical activities, investigative tasks, mini-whiteboards, matching/tarsia cards, teacherstv, graphics calculators, pupils have the opportunity to work in a challenging, fun and diverse atmosphere.
Mathematics Inspection 2013 (Standard Inspection Report)
The quality of provision in mathematics is very good.
The strengths of the provision include the:
strong collegiality within the department and the commitment of the teachers;
work of the teachers to promote an interest in and enjoyment of mathematics;
detailed planning which guides the use of effective learning strategies, including collaborative activities in which pupils explain their reasoning;
good or better quality of teaching in all of the lessons observed;
very good standards achieved in public examinations; and
very good leadership and management by the Head of Department.
Outside class time, teachers give a lot of their time to support students including revision classes – regularly giving extra tuition to students at lunchtime and after school. The ‘Learning Support Programme’ also allows a Year 13 Mathematics student, to assist those identified pupils in Year 8-11 who may struggle with any aspect of their Mathematics work.
Pupils are also encouraged to broaden their Mathematics experiences and have various opportunities to do so as they pass through the school. Each year, Mathematics pupils in Year 9, 11 and 13 participate in the UK Mathematics Challenges organised by the University of Leeds. They also have opportunities to take part in the annual ‘Who wants to be a Mathionaire’, NSPCC Number Day, World Maths Day, Fun Maths Road show, Fantasy Football and educational trips to Queen’s University of Belfast and W5 at the Odyssey, Belfast.
Key Stage 3
Mathematics at Key Stage 3 is delivered over five lessons per week covering topics in Number, Algebra, Shape Space Measure and Data Handling. The curriculum aims to develop and equip pupils with appropriate mathematical skills in a wide range of areas and to enable them to use ICT as an effective statistical analytical tool.
Pupils are streamed at the beginning of year 10 based on their year 9 summer examinations, where more able pupils gain greater exposure to more advanced topics required to progress to Further Mathematics at Key Stage 4.
Pupils at the end of year 10 then sit examinations based on their streaming level, which in turn, determines their class placement in Key Stage 4 (M3/M4, M7/M8 and/or Further Mathematics)
All pupils study Mathematics to Higher Level in the new two tier CCEA specification with a majority of students aiming for the A* - B grade boundary, sitting all examinations at the end of Year 12.
In Years 11 and 12 approximately 30% of the students study both the CCEA GCSE and the GCSE Further Mathematics syllabuses, sitting all examinations at the end of Year 12.
Mathematics is a very popular choice at AS and A2 level with approximately 35 –50 students opting to study this course. Pupils are streamed into two classes depending on their knowledge of / grade in GCSE Further Mathematics, which is NOT a prerequisite of the course.
Again, students follow the CCEA specifications, using the textbooks ‘Understanding Pure Mathematics’ and ‘Understanding Mechanics’ both by Sadler & Thorning. The main text for module S1 is ‘A concise course in A-level Statistics, by Crawshaw and Chambers.
External Written Examination - 2 hours
M7/M8 Higher Completion Test
Two external written examinations
Paper 1 without calculator - 1 hour 15 mins
Paper 2 with calculator - 1 hour 15 mins
GCSE Further Mathematics
Unit 1 Pure
External written examination - 2 hours
Unit 2 Mechanics
External written examination - 1 hour
Unit 3 Statistics
External written examination - 1 hour
The main textbook is ‘Higher GCSE Mathematics; Revision & Practice’ by Rayner and ‘Further Mathematics’ by Neil Hamilton etc.
AS 1: Pure
External written examination - 1 hour 45 mins
60% of AS
24% of A Level
AS 2: Applied
External written examination - 1 hour 15 mins
40% of AS
16% of A level
A2 1: Pure
External written examination - 2 hours 30 mins
36% of A Level
A2 2: Applied
External written examination - 1 hour 30 mins
24% of a Level
The textbooks used are ‘Understanding Pure Mathematics’ and ‘Understanding Mechanics’ both by Sadler & Thorning. The main text for module S1 is ‘A concise course in A-level Statistics’, by Crawshaw and Chambers.