Designing exciting new ways to learn and enjoy maths
FunKey Maths has developed innovative and effective peer mentoring programme for schools which develops number sense in KS1 children and a range of hugely important soft skills in KS2 mentors. The intervention is fun, effective and affordable. Mentors and mentees love it, as do schools who are looking to improve their maths results.
Peer Mentoring session – young children gain hugely by working with an older child. They improve their maths skills but also the positive 1:1 attention helps their self-esteem and confidence to soar.
The Funkey Maths cards also help children make richer connections between numbers; master multiplication and division facts simultaneously; and make links between factor pairs. Plus, they help embed the meaning of prime, square, factor, multiple and product.
Instead of learning 132 unique multiplication facts, there are just 53 products to learn! The Funkey Maths cards also help children make richer connections between numbers; master multiplication and division facts simultaneously; and make links between factor pairs. Plus, they help embed the meaning of prime, square, factor, multiple and product.
I designed the brand identity and website for this educational resource, plus all physical products, resources, and accessories.
Educator Maggie Steel developed FunKey Maths, a peer mentoring programme which supports kids who are falling behind with their maths in school. The programme, which teaches using fun, games, and physical activity, is supported by Jesse Norman MP.
Initially we designed cards to support these peer activities, focussing on counting games. I then worked with Maggie to develop a Times Table game which helps young learners to understand and practise multiplication and division. It builds self-confidence, encourages a deeper understanding beyond rote learning, and can help to engage kids who don’t respond to conventional instruction. Our development is now funded by the innovation think tank Nesta.
The game was a finalist in the Small Business of the Year category in the 2017 Education Resources awards and has been adopted by the Northern Ireland Educational Authority as an official resource. An evaluation by Doctor Marcus Witt of the University of the West of England found that “FunKey provides a very low-cost and highly effective peer-teaching intervention” which “has huge potential and merits further investment.”
“I’ve worked with Monika for over three years. She has the highest standards and strives for excellence. She is careful and measured in her approach and always seeks to understand the end user. Her designs for the FunKey Maths Tables Cards are universally liked by teachers and students. Monika’s thoughtful, questioning approach was helpful in delivering optimal functionality with beautiful, appealing designs. Monika is honest, compassionate and works with integrity. Her creative flair would be an asset to any company.”
Maggie Steel, Founder & Director, FunKey Maths
Numeracy is one of the key skills for our technological society and a continuing challenge for education systems globally. FunKey Maths seeks to engage & enthuse all children so that they enjoy & succeed in learning the fundamentals of mathematics.
Finding a way of teaching maths, in the context of the FunKey mentoring programme, which appeals to & engages students who don’t respond to standard teaching methods.
Creation of new FunKey card resources for games & activities
Low & high fidelity prototyping, testing in schools, refinement of the games, activities, and supporting resources in the product.
Combining the roles of shareholder & designer, embracing both a strategic overall view & meticulous attention to detail. Embracing incremental steps on large projects which demand wide stakeholder buy-in and include a range of professional & social relationships.