Mathsmatters - Keen Students in Training

Every Thursday lunchtime a dedicated group of year 5 and 6 students go to room 3 armed with their lunchboxes, whiteboard and marker with the sole intention of solving maths problems. This is not a detention! Mrs Green challenges the students to warm up with a number based mental agility problem before tackling some themed, real-life math word problems.


Students get to explore different number strategies for solving maths problems whilst developing their key competencies:

  • Using language, symbols and text,

  • Relating to others,

  • Participating and contributing

  • Thinking

Their ability to listen, cooperate and negotiate with their teammates is a major focus. There are many teaching points that emerge from the challenges set and these are picked up in subsequent sessions.


This training will culminate in the annual inter-school maths team competition ‘Mathsmatters’ which is held at Taupo Intermediate School on the evening of Wednesday 19 September. Each team has three members and Wairakei currently has four year 6 teams and two year 5 teams. The buzz of excitement is discernible on the competition night and presents a great opportunity for students to pit their wits against similar students from other local schools.


Alex - I like going to Mathsmatters as it gives me more confidence to do maths in class. Working in teams means we have 3 brains altogether which helps me to understand more.

Ryan - Maths is my favourite subject and I know that I am getting more prepared for Intermediate. I would love to achieve 2nd pace or better so I can beat my brother Jacob (3rd place 2016)

Kane - I wasn’t going to join a team but Mrs Green encouraged me to join in. I am really glad as I can better understand word problems like working out averages.


Keywords: problem-solving, team-work