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Mathematics Department 

"Do not worry about your difficulties in mathematics, I assure you that mine are greater." Albert Einstein

The Mathematics Department at Craigholme School aims to allow all girls to have the opportunity to achieve their full mathematical potential through a variety of teaching and learning methods. We have a well-resourced department, and a wide variety of materials and approaches that are used to deliver the curriculum.

Why Study Maths?

Studying maths is an essential and integral part of every young person’s education, and as such is viewed as an extremely desirable qualification by both further education establishments and employers.   

At Craigholme we aim to provide a stimulating learning environment that develops pupils thinking skills and provides them with the necessary skills required by employers.  

We as a department work together to promote active learning. We develop pupils thinking skills using real life examples. This allows them to see the relevance of maths in everyday life.  

We as a department are enabling pupils to become successful learners, confident individuals, responsible citizens and effective contributors. 

The Curriculum 

S1 and S2

In S1 and S2 pupils will study Number, Algebra, Geometry and Information Handling. Mental agility and non-calculator skills are developed throughout S1 and S2.

The topics covered in S1 include:

  • Number: whole numbers, fractions, percentages, decimals and integers, number properties, area and volume.
  • Algebra: simplifying algebraic expressions, substitution, solving equations and sequences.
  • Geometry: angle properties, the triangle and other 2-D shapes, 3 dimensions, shape construction and scale drawing.
  • Information Handling: mean, median, mode, frequency tables, collecting and displaying data.

The Second year Mathematics syllabus builds on many of the topics covered in SI, with algebra becoming a more prominent feature of the course. Pupils are encouraged to develop both their problem solving skills and mathematical rigor. Throughout the S2 course alongside an emphasis on mental agility appropriate use of the calculator is also encouraged.

The topics covered in S2 include:

  • Number - money, sequences, ratio and proportion, fractions and percentages, scientific notation, distance, speed and time calculations,
  • Algebra – further equations and inequations, factorising, Pythagoras Theorem, generating linear sequences ,area formulae
  • Geometry – co-ordinates, quadrilaterals, the circle, rotational and transformational symmetry, 2 and 3 dimensional shapes 
  • Information Handling – Dot plots, stem and leaf diagrams

Both Knowledge and Understanding and Reasoning and Enquiry skills are tested in all assessments.

S3 and S4 National 5 Mathematics

The National 5 Mathematics course comprises of 3 Units. In-order to achieve a“National 5 Award” candidates must pass each unit as well as the final external SQA assessment.

Unit 1 Expressions and Formulae: Pupils will learn how to: manipulate algebraic formulae, simplify algebraic expressions and evaluate formulae.

Unit 2 Relationships: Pupils will learn how to: solve and manipulate equations, work with graphs and carry out calculations on the lengths and angles of shapes.

Unit 3 Applications: Pupils will learn how to: apply the mathematical skills they have developed to solve problems set within real life contexts. This will involve pupils using trigonometry, geometry, number processes and statistics within real-life situations.

Throughout the “National 5 Course” there is an emphasis on skills development and the application of those skills.

S5 Higher Mathematics

The Higher Mathematics course expands and develops the knowledge and skills gained in the “National 5 Course”. Once again the Higher Mathematics Course comprises of 3 Units. In-order to achieve a “Higher Maths Award” candidates must pass each unit as well as the final external SQA examination. Particular emphasis is given to furthering the student's knowledge and ability in algebra, coordinate geometry and trigonometry. Calculus, logarithmic and exponential functions and vectors in three dimensions are also introduced. 

S6 Advanced Higher Mathematics

The Advanced Higher Mathematics course is often popular with pupils who are interested in studying Mathematics or related subject at University level. The course is demanding, requiring a high degree of mathematical rigor. Once again the course builds on many topics covered at higher.

A wide range of topics are studied including  further Differential and Integral Calculus, Complex Numbers, Mathematical Proof, 3 Dimensional Vectors, Matrices and Sequences and Series.


Homework is a very important and integral part of all Maths Courses from S1-S6. Pupils are given regular homework tasks by their class teacher which helps to both re-in force class work and to provide a means of challenging and stimulating pupil’s interest.

Beyond the School...

At Craigholme, we encourage girls to enrich their mathematical enjoyment by taking part in various national competitions. We regularly take part in the following events:

  • Scottish Mathematics Challenge
  • Primary Maths Challenge
  • Maths Master Class at Glasgow University
  • UKMT Junior, Intermediate and Senior Challenge
  • Enterprising Mathematics Challenge

Meet the Staff

Ms J Ritson

Dr W Mekwi


Nationals in a Nutshell