Dr. Natthapoj Vincent Trakulphadetkrai (Lecturer in Primary Mathematics Education) was awarded the University’s Endowment Fund to organise a free research-based Maths Through Stories workshop for Mathematics Subject Co-ordinators of local schools. The fund was awarded by the Vice-Chancellor following a bidding process. Its aim is to support staff to organise an event “involving the public or external stakeholders”. Across the University, there are only around ten members of staff being awarded. This fund is in addition to the £10,000 University Research Fellowship that Dr. Trakulphadetkrai was recently awarded to allow him to focus on conducting a research project exploring the effectiveness of pupils creating their own mathematical story picture books on their mathematics learning next academic year.

Dr. Trakulphadetkrai used a portion of the awarded fund to organise a free 3-hour workshop training Mathematics Subject Co-ordinators of local schools on how to teach mathematics using story picture books, which is his research expertise. The event took place on 1 May 2019 and attracted Mathematics Subject Co-ordinators of around 30 primary schools across Berkshire.

Following this event, the teachers are expected to deliver a mathematics lesson using a story picture book and to write up their lesson idea and share it with other teachers from around the world on Dr. Trakulphadetkrai’s research project website (MathsThroughStories.org). The rest of the fund will be spent on creating a training video with the help of teachers and pupils from Redlands Primary School. This video will be made available on the MathsThroughStories.org website and will be used as part of Dr. Trakulphadetkrai’s future training workshops and those delivered by teacher educators in the UK and abroad.

Comments from some of the workshop participants include:

“Thought provoking, engaging. I will share the resources [on MathsThroughStories.org] with the rest of the teaching team. As Mathematics Coordinator, I will include stories as part of the Mathematics curriculum planning overview.”

“Thoroughly engaging due to its inspiring concept, workshop leader and immersive material. I feel inspired to implement the strategy of mathematics teaching through stories.”

“Really interesting and useful. I am excited to trial a story picture book within a Maths unit. I think my school setting from Reception to Year 6 will find this exhilarating. I look forward to sharing this!”

“It was really engaging and inspiring to realise the wealth of resources out there! I will endeavour to use story picture books in my mathematics teaching to help children make links.”