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Ideas and Inspiration

Whilst pupils are at home, continue learning and having fun with maths using these fantastic resources.

We'll continue to add to our offer to support your distance learning for the rest of this school year. Follow us on Twitter @MathsWeekScot and check out our News page for weekly updates of ideas.

For now get your pupils inspired with

  • Museum at Home from National Museum Scotland
  • Castle Quest at Home
  • Ceilidh Dancing with Science Ceilidh
  • Deputy First Ministers Spring Challenge
  • Maths Week Scotland Challenges
  • Escape Rooms and Treasure Trails with Anderston Primary School
  • Virtual STEM Ambassadors
  • Careers Videos from Edinburgh University

National Museums Scotland

Suitable for a range of levels

The museums may be closed but you can still explore STEM at National Museums Scotland online!

Find blog posts of unsung mathematical heroes and how maths and data tracks sharks. Discover the exciting world of code-breaking with the morse code simulator and a look inside an enigma machine.

Think you've got what it takes to be a code breaker? Try the Cryptography Challenge. Each answer is an exhibit at the National Museum of Scotland.

Engima workings

Edinburgh Castle Quest at Home

Suitable for Second Level

How did maths build the castle? How did division help people survive a seige?

Explore Edinburgh Castle and your local area through maths eyes with our activities aimed at P5-7 pupils.

Castle Trail Header edit

Maths Ceilidh

How can we use music and dance to explore mathematical concepts? We teamed up with Science Ceilidh to find out.

Get your dancing shoes on and explore symmetry through ceilidh dance. You only need four people (or four objects for a table top version!) and a small square of space.

Lewis and Caity from Science Ceilidh show us how it is done in this short video.

Build your skills in fractions and musical notation with a game of Musical Dominoes. Print or copy out this template and get started! Full instructions here.

Deputy First Minister's Spring Challenge

Suitable for Second Level

Get the whole family enjoying maths with spring games and puzzles, plus top tips on how to integrate more maths at home.

Created by the Scottish Mathematical Society

Spring DFM

Maths Week Scotland Challenges

Suitable for a range of levels

Put your skills to the test in our Maths Week Scotland challenges. From photography to puzzles there is something for Early Years right up to S6! Entries may be closed but still have a go at all past challenges.

  • Deputy First Minister Daily Challenges test your logic and maths skills. They also come with video hints from the pupils of Grange Academy if you are stuck.
  • If digital games are your thing, Sumdog have a range of games for all ages to access from home.
  • Maths Wi Nae Borders runs each year for classes to complete together. Get in training for the next competition with these past questions.
  • Explore the world though maths eyes with the Maths Inside competitions. A new one will be launching soon so watch this space...

STEM Ambassadors

Suitable for all levels

STEM Ambassadors regularly visit classes to share how they use maths in their roles for Maths Week Scotland. They have increased their online offer for families and schools in response to COVID-19 including:

  • Virtual STEM Ambassador sessions for home schooling
  • Online resources
  • Online CPD

Treasure Trails and Escape Rooms

Suitable for First and Second Level

You can turn your home into an escape room with this code solving game made by Anderston Primary School for Maths Week Scotland 2019.

If you live near Anderston or Kelvingrove Park, turn your daily walk into an adventure solving problems and finding clues with treasure trails created by Anderston Primary School. Find out how via the Anderston Primary School Website below.

Have you created your own for your local area? Share with us @MathsWeekScot on Twitter or via email info@mathsweek.scot.

Children need to be accompanied by an adult and social distancing measure observed at all times.

Treasure Trail kids

Funding for the trails were from the Maths Week Scotland Small Grants Fund. Content for the day developed by school staff with support from the Parent Council.

University of Edinburgh Strategy Games

Suitable for Second, Third and Fourth Level

Use strategy games and transport network to explore maths in the classroom.

These videos and puzzles look to develop mathematical thinking and problem solving skills. Each includes tips and advice for how to complete.

Find them here

University of Edinburgh Maths Week at Work

Suitable for Third and Fourth Level

Join a video game programmer, actuary, transport planner and academic as they discuss how they use maths in their jobs.

Each video features a maths problem faced by them in their careers to try and solve.

Royal Institution

Suitable for First and Second Level

Soap bubbles, paper folding, computers and bridges are all inspiration for these Primary School activity ideas from the Royal Institution.

Maths Week Scotland was celebrated in schools across the nation. This is what just a few schools got up in previous years. If you have something to share, let us know!

Disaster Relief Day

Disaster Relief day challenged students from Kilchrenan Primary, Achaleven Primary and Barcaldine Primary to work against the clock on a series of activities themed around an international disaster relief rescue mission. Although presented as a fictional scenario a sense of urgency and drama was created with authentic posters, presentation of activities and timed events.

Pupils used numeracy, reasoning, creative and social skills to solve problems including Designing a Rescue Vehicle, Moving Supplies, Recording a TV Appeal and Loading Planes.

“The children were able to achieve a challenge using ‘their’ maths. They had fun doing it. They saw it fit into the world in new ways, real ways. What was wonderful was to see maths achievement on the faces of the children, that came from the knowledge that they had ‘done it’ with maths!”

Funding for transport for the schools and materials were from the Maths Week Scotland Small Grants Fund. Content for the day developed by school staff.

Enigma machine

Secondary schools in Angus all got to experience a real enigma machine with a visit from the Bletchley Park Team. They got hands on with cracking codes, and inspired by stories of the role of mathematicians in the Second World War.

Mr Peter Todd organised the week of workshops and talks with all secondary schools in the area, with funding from the Scottish Government and the Edinburgh Mathematical Society.

Enigma Edited
“The impact from the visit has been huge. Every time Thomas went to a school there was a queue of teachers waiting to see the Enigma machine. How often do students get to see teachers genuinely enthused and interested about something in the school? I think the event had a massive impact on student interest in Mathematics and in particular codebreaking.”

Maths in...

Maths Week Scotland had a different theme each day in these schools, with Maths in Art and Maths in ICT kicking off the week!

It wasn’t just for the pupils though. Parents got messy baking treats midweek, using maths to measure and weight their way to Rocky Road success. The week ended with Maths Outside and cross-year group challenges using natural materials and shapes in nature.

Pupils really enjoyed finding maths everywhere and great fun exploring maths.

DG North Rhins MWS 1

Beautiful Maths

Schools across Scotland explored and created beautiful maths, like this sierpinski pyramid by Woodfarm High School

Beautiful Maths

If you would like more info on any of these activities contact info@mathsweek.scot

Latest News

Women in Maths

To celebrate women in Maths Day (12 May) we interviewed six women with maths at the core of their role and will be releasing the videos throughout May.

Our next two videos are women who work with large numbers which affect all of our lives. Kate Forbes is the Cabinet Secretary for Finance for Scotland and Esther Roughsedge is a Statistician at National Records of Scotland.

View details