Well done Huw Lewis, Secretary of State for Education in Wales.

Huw Lewis is the Secretary of State for Education in Wales. Today Mr Lewis has launched the ‘What you say counts’. This is a campaign aimed at parents to improve the image of MATHEMATICS.

The point is quite simple. Children listen to adults and when adults try to be understanding with comments like ‘ I could never do maths when I was your age’, the adults are actually undermining the children and their education.

Media people are the worst offenders.  I have lost count of the number of times I have seen TV presenters rejoice in their innumeracy .

This is a shameful admission and for some reason we wear our innumeracy with pride.  Yet people hide the fact they cannot read. ALL children are expected to read, all children should similarly be expected to be numerate.  That means we have to change. Yes adults have to change.

We have to be positive about mathematics and not run scared from it and we need to give children and young people positive attitudes to maths.

If we are to have an educated workforce in the future they must be literate and numerate at a high level.  As a former mathematics teacher and now an author of mathematics education books I have been banging a drum on this one for 30 years. So I am delighted someone else in authority feels the same way. The campaign is being fronted by Welsh tv presenter Arfon Haines-Davies and hopefully will help to change attitudes.

Do you need to improve your maths? You may be influencing your own children to fail.

Look on amazon for my book Understanding Maths, it will help.

Everytime you think you are being helpful by making a negative comment on mathematics to a child, you are in fact damaging that child’s future. We all have a responsibility on this one, I know where I stand on this one, do you?

Together we can change things!





4 Comments on "Well done Huw Lewis, Secretary of State for Education in Wales."

  1. Hi Graham,

    it is nice to read a former mathematics teachers opinion about how mathematics is treated nowadays.

    I sometimes think that it starts already in school that mathematcis is not given the importance it needs to have. My little one is going to 3rd grade of an English private school here in Cyprus and when I look at what they are taught, I feel that we knew much more about math already in 1st grade.

    However, I am luckily in the position that I can spend time with her in the afternoon to teach her what isn’t taught in school. But many other parents can’t and thus their kids are missing out on one of the most important basics for their future life.



    • Great to hear from you Torsten and thank you for your comments. I am delighted that you can spend time with the little one. Make sure she enjoys the mathematics and then she will thrive

  2. Graham

    I’m of the (very) old school where we sat and chanted the multiplication tables at our desks si when someone says 8*7, the answer immediately jumps into my mouth. I watch my children, graduates in marketing and sports, running through the tables if I ask the the same question!

    I did try and help them when they were at senior school, but some of the questions were quite confusing and the way they were shown how to do things did not make much sense to me. So my help was not always that great.

    As a school governor in the past for eleven years, I seemed to find that each time a new minister for education took over (about every 18/24 months) the way maths was taught changed. I can’t recall learning maths in a different way at any stage when I went ti school so I suggest they take the syllabus out of the hands of politicians and hand it back to people like you who understand the way to teach!

    To your success


    • Thank you Dave. You know you’ve hit the nail on the head. It is politicians who need to butt out but they clearly won’t

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