Teacher of Maths, Bedales

BA Oxford (St Edmund Hall), PGCE Durham, MSc Sussex, MA Chichester

What makes a good teacher at Bedales?

Authenticity and integrity.

What are you trying to encourage and instil in your students?

The meaning gained from connecting ideas. Through the process of linking new concepts to our existing view of the world we start to make sense of the unfamiliar. Through looking for pattern in apparently diverse – and perhaps mundane – phenomena we start to recognise common underlying structures, as well as identifying what makes things distinctive. “Only connect the prose and the passion, and both will be exalted, and human love will be seen at its height.”

Apart from your teaching role, what else do you get involved with at the school?

I am a Sixth Form tutor, I coordinate chess, including at Dunannie, and I occasionally play violin in the school orchestras.

In your opinion, what makes Bedales special?

For me, the fact that it is the quality of the human relationships that we forge being more important than the roles we have. Consequently, we can be more sensitive to what we feel and more open about what is important to us. Which in turn lead to authenticity and integrity.

Who or what inspires you?

Jacob Bronowski – his “Ascent of Man” documentary series which I saw as a teenager when it was first shown on BBC2 is a significant influence. For him, Mathematics is entwined in our culture. As well as being a leading mathematician Bronowski authored books on William Blake.

Tell us something not a lot of people know about you.

I enjoy listening to Joan Armatrading, “Love and Affection” and “Willow” being two favourites.

Martin has a blog and regularly posts about maths on Mathematics Matter, here

Martin is also a regular contributor of articles to the Secondary Magazine section of the National Centre for Excellence in the Teaching of Mathematics (NCETM),  please note, you will need to register (free) to access articles.