A niche joke

In the Philippines, two fifths of the band play on.

Forgive my indulgence – a rather niche joke.

Where you fall in the Venn diagram below will determine whether or not you are enjoying a quiet chuckle right now.

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Strike one for the maths teachers …

… or how I (silently) cheered when the tables were turned.

Many is the time in my classroom (and, I suspect, in classrooms up and down the land) that I’ve had to interject, and re-focus my students when their thoughts – and more importantly – their chat has turned to football.

And so, the other day I smiled inwardly, and gave a silent cheer when, whilst stood behind a group of students watching the school’s first team footballers play an important cup tie, I heard them talking about maths. The tables had turned, and I was delighted.

The conversation began with them discussing formations: were the opposition playing 4-4-2, or 3-5-1-1? One wag (not WAG!) commented that they were playing 1-1-1-1-1-1-1-1-1-1.

Ah, you mean 110?

replied his mate, and so the conversation moved on from playing styles and onto indices and laws of powers.

Reader, I must confess that, on this occasion, I did not “re-focus” them (although I did interject to settle an argument as to whether anything to power 0 really does always equal 1. I didn’t want any trouble on the terraces.)

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Whimsical and self-deprecating

Forgive me for being a little self-indulgent today.

I am very chuffed and rather proud to have been featured in Mr Barton’s Podcast, as one of three recommended websites or blogs by his interviewee Rob Eastaway. Many you will know of Rob Eastaway, but for those of you who don’t, he is an author and broadcaster who is active in the popularisation of mathematics, somewhat of a celebrity in mathematical circles (aren’t all circles mathematical?!)

He describes my – this – blog as “whimsical, self-deprecating and slightly serendipitous”, and I couldn’t have hoped for a better analysis.

And to hear my website mentioned alongside FullFact.org – the UK;s independent fact checking charity  – and the BBC Podcast “The Boring Talks” puts me at exalted heights of which I could only dream.

My mention can be found on Mr Barton’s Podcast – well worth listening to the whole show, but if you want to hear my cameo mention please skip ahead to 2hr 13 mins.

I write my blog because I enjoy doing so, that others enjoy reading it is a great honour.

If you’ve never read any of Rob Eastaway’s books, I suggest you do – you can find a collection of them here , and his next book is published on Thursday:

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June 2019 9 – 1 GCSE Grade Boundaries

For info and reference, below are the grade boundaries for the June 2019 Maths GCSE (and IGCSE) exams.

With particular thanks to https://mathsbot.com/gcse/boundaries who make it so easy to find grade boundaries for any year and board.

Higher Tier:

Foundation Tier:

Pearson EdExcel IGCSE Maths:

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June 2019 A level Grade Boundaries

Image by Andrew Martin from Pixabay

Offered without comment, below are the grade boundaries for the new spec. Maths A level, June 2019: Grade – Percentage (Raw Score)

Note, all boards the maximum raw score is 300


A* – 77% (231)

A  – 62% (185)

B  – 50% (151)

C  – 39% (118)

D  – 28% (85)

E –  17% (52)


A* – 72% (217)

A  – 55% (165)

B  – 45% (134)

C  – 34% (103)

D  – 24% (73)

E  – 14% (43)


A* – 72% (216)

A  – 54% (161)

B  – 43% (130)

C  – 33% (100)

D  – 23% (70)

E  – 13% (40)

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