According to their School Improvement Plan, Courtlane Junior School in Cosham needed to address the pupils perception of themselves as mathematicians.
A large scale collaborative project was devised using the inherent mathematics of patterns and geometry to address this.
The pupils were shown a variety of cultural treatment of symbolic pattern and building construction. Working together, their year 4 split into groups to design and build an enormous 8 metre tiled image. Every child designed and made a patterned tile that encoded an aspect of their life.
From the original proposal:
“To make an exciting, multi-layered project encompassing various aspects of mathematics and art practices.
The project will explore patterns inherent in their environment. They will investigate the numbers and geometry that lie within these patterns, and transform them into a large collaborative work. Present ideas are based around making a colourful, geometric carpet-design backdrop for the school stage.
The inspiration for this project work comes from the principles that underlie temples and places of communal gathering. These places are oriented around a centre point, and social value is of a high importance. The project is aimed to increase a sense of school community, while improving their understanding of practical mathematics.
Traditionally, many of the eastern carpet designs were 2D plan views of 3D buildings. The building of a temple involved a lot of initial planning with regards to the placement ie: perimeter, area, measurement, and other dimensions that were specific to the location. The pupils can be involved in these at all stages.”