Making connections

Mathematics is a coherent and connected enterprise. To reflect this we have organised our resources along a system of thematic tube lines.

These resources support teachers in the classroom. They help students build firm foundations for mathematical understanding by connecting ideas and developing techniques.

This new approach to post-16 mathematics is being developed by the University of Cambridge, funded by a grant from the UK Department for Education. The resources are free for all users.

Underground Mathematics started in 2012 as the Cambridge Mathematics Education Project (CMEP).

Why use Underground Mathematics?

  • Rich resources

    Rich resources

    Designed to stimulate students' curiosity and elicit discovery of ideas, the resources can be used flexibly, offering a meaningful challenge to all students.

  • Mathematical discussion

    Promote mathematical discussion

    Resources encourage students to pose questions, reflect and collaborate, deepening their individual understanding.

  • Developed with teachers

    Developed with teachers

    Partner schools across England work closely with the project team, trialling resources and giving feedback. Teachers’ experiences have fed into teacher notes that accompany resources.

  • Ready to use

    Ready to use

    Resources have been designed for classroom use and can include card sets and worksheets. GeoGebra applets may be used on our site or downloaded.

  • An emphasis on connections

    An emphasis on connections

    The tubemap shows multiple connections between topics. In addition, processes and pervasive ideas allow users to connect resources by thinking about approaches to the problems and the concepts involved.

  • Teacher support

    Solutions and teacher notes

    Solutions are provided which also offer questions, suggestions of multiple approaches, and opportunities for reflection. Brief teacher notes within many resources provide support for using the resources in the classroom.

How-to guide

Overview

Our resources are organised into topics or stations on a map or tubemap showing the connections between them.

Watch this video or use the preceding menu to find out more.

The map

Map

The mathematics has been organised along a system of tube lines, which reflect big themes that run through mathematics. The tubemap offers a way to navigate to resources for teaching a particular area of mathematics; resources can be accessed by clicking on a station name. Some stations are still in development and this is indicated by a construction symbol.

You can access the map at any time by clicking the Map button in the main menu.

Map button

Stations

Stations

Each station features an overarching question that could be used to stimulate curiosity. There are a number of key questions that summarise the ideas that arise in the resources. You can filter resources by selecting a key question. You can also filter resources by tube line, if you wish to choose a resource with a particular emphasis.

The resources that are available at each station may come under three headings. Resources that introduce new ideas relating to the station are in the “Introducing” section. “Developing” resources may build on these ideas or earlier work. “Review questions” are mostly drawn from past examination questions and have been chosen as ones that are interesting in nature and require non-routine thinking.

Resources

Resources

To help you find the resources you are looking for, we have classified them according to twelve resource types.

Resources are divided into sections. In some cases this may be a warm-up followed by a larger task, and others may have a problem followed by a suggestion of how to tackle it. Almost all resources contain a solution or a “Things you might have noticed” section. This may help you to think about questions you might ask students, to see areas where students could get stuck, or offer further insight into how you might use the resource in your classroom. Further support is offered in the teacher notes.

Pervasive ideas

Pervasive ideas wheel
Pervasive idea in resource sidebar

By clicking on a pervasive idea you will find a description of how the idea arises within the resources. If pervasive ideas are highlighted in a resource they appear in the sidebar (or bottom-bar on a small screen) and in the list of resources at the station (on a wide screen).

What are pervasive ideas?

How to comment

Comment

We would like to hear about how you’ve used the resources. You can contribute to the conversation using the Discuss button in the top menu bar. By setting up a login you will become part of the Underground Mathematics community, enabling you to leave comments on the site and receive the half-termly newsletter, if you wish.

Saving resources

Adding a resource to your collection
Opening your resource collection

You can save a resource for later by adding it to your resource collection. To do this click the star next to the resource title. Note you must log in or register to use this facility. To access your resource collection, click the User button in the top menu bar then Your resource collection.

Creating a subcollection

Within your resource collection, you can organise your resources by creating ordered subcollections. To add a resource to a subcollection, click the add to subcollection icon in your resource collection table. To select a subcollection, use the drop-down list above the table. You can also generate a PDF of resources from a subcollection, which could be used to generate your own exam from our review questions, for example.

Bundles and more

The more menu

The More menu in the top right contains links to the Underground hub, our About and contact page and the Your mathematical classroom section of the site.

The Underground hub contains news, events and updates, quotes, the newsletter archive, useful links, and more.

Our About page contains a video explaining our philosophy, and an overview of our team.

The Your mathematical classroom area of the site is accessible from the More menu and has been coloured purple to distinguish it from the rest of the site, as well as having its own menu once inside this area. It contains support for using our resources in the classroom as well as professional development opportunities. This includes the Bundles page, which contains small collections of resources that have a particular focus or goal, our Resources in action page, which provides detailed teacher support for a handful of resources, our Teacher perspective blog, upcoming and recorded webinars and information about our Champions programme.

Classroom use

The resources have been designed to be used flexibly in the classroom.

Project

For using resources via a projector you can select the fullscreen mode.

Print

The printable/supporting materials link allows you to print or download the resource or any extras, such as card sorts or worksheets.

Device

Using individual devices will allow students to control the GeoGebra applets which appear in some resources.

From the Underground hub and more

What’s going on at Underground Mathematics?

The hub provides access to the new developments at Underground Mathematics: news, events, additions to the range of resources, newletters, posters for download and more.

Get aboard Underground Mathematics

Underground Mathematics exists for the benefit of you and your students. By setting up a login you will become part of the Underground Mathematics community, enabling you to leave comments on the site and receive the half-termly newsletter.

Comments and Discussion

We are actively seeking feedback from teachers about our resources, especially based on experiences of using them with students. Share this with other teachers and the Underground Mathematics team by using the Discuss link at the top of the page.

Newsletter

Our half-termly newsletter will keep you up-to-date with the latest news and developments at Underground Mathematics, such as new resources, teachers’ descriptions of how they have used resources with their students, and details of any forthcoming events. Register

Get in touch

We welcome all enquiries including feedback on how we can improve Underground Mathematics.

Centre for Mathematical Sciences
Wilberforce Road
Cambridge CB3 0WA
United Kingdom
For technical queries email webmaster@undergroundmathematics.org.