It’s December…it’s that time of year again…!

And so to the annual update on Mathematical Advent Calendars. On Teachit Maths their Interactive advent calendar is a free sample resource available to everybody. (Remember that the free subscription on this excellent site includes hundreds of high-quality pdf resources.) Teachit Maths describe the resource as an advent calendar in the form of a presentation focusing mainly on mathematics. Suitable for KS3/4. (KS3/4 is UK age 11-16). For each day you will reveal a festive fact, joke, teaching idea, activity or game.

From Andy Lutwyche we have his Christmas Advent Calendar which covers lots of different topics in number, algebra, shape & space and data and gets progressively more difficult as you go on.

Also from Andy, try his Advent Calendar – Solving Linear Equations. Students answer the questions (the solutions are 1 to 24) and each answer links to a word; when the words are put in numerical order an entire joke is revealed! And another…for older students, Differentiation Advent Calendar where students are asked to find the gradient of a curve at a given point. Cheesy joke included!

Also from Andy, this “Advent” Calendar is a set of GCSE Higher non-calculator questions. Full answers are provided on a series of slides.
Further revision calendars are included later in this post.

Staying with a calculus theme, I used Dr Tom Bennison’s Integration a day Advent Calendar last year and will do so again this year – perfect for year 13.

Also on TES you can find an excellent calendar from Mark Dawes.
This is a lovely resource with over 30 problem-solving tasks for use in maths lessons in December. Suitable for starter activities, they span a range of abilities in KS3 and KS4. As well as the calendar the resource includes worksheets for some of the problems and an Excel file showing the difficulty of the tasks.

I do like Mark’s suggestions for use in class, he has given instructions for manipulating the resource so teachers can choose the problem they want for any day!

For a collection of starters aimed at KS3 students try this Christmas Maths Advent Starter Calendar from MrCsMaths. This provides a nice mix of activities.

J Calderwood has provided three Advent Calendars – Advanced Higher, HIgher and N5 Maths for Scottish Students. A great revision resource which could be adapted for different courses.

From a favourite site, where you can find so many excellent resources, Transum has an Advent Calendar. Behind each door, you will find a Christmaths activity, laugh at a cracker joke and solve a mathematical word puzzle.
(See this post for more on Transum.)

Try this Mathsvent Calendar from Phil BruceFor December 1st put the baubles in size order along the tinsel starting with the smallest at the bottom.

Very usefully, you can find all 24 puzzles listed by topic. These puzzles are great, extensions are given for many of the problems too.

Nrich publishes annual Advent Calendars – one for Primary and one for Secondary. Both feature twenty-four activities, one for each day in the run-up to Christmas. Both calendars this year feature a wonderful variety of tasks from twenty-four different past features. Both Nrich and Plus Magazine have published wonderful collections of Advent resources, clearly, for an Advent Calendar, the year does not matter so we have lots of choices! See for example this whole collection of advent calendars on Nrich, note the different themes available – a Sudoku for each day perhaps? Maybe you want to play a game? The 2016 Primary Calendar featured tasks to encourage mathematical habits of mind something we need to encourage in students of all ages.

From Nrich in 2017 we have a calendar for Primary and one for Secondary each containing twenty-four problem-solving activities, one for each day in the run-up to Christmas. The secondary tasks come from the excellent Short Problems collection.

The Indisputable Santa Mathematical Advent Calendar comes from Dr Hannah Fry and Dr Thomas Oléron Evans who throughout December 2016, to accompany the release of their book on the Mathematics of Christmas, tweeted out Christmathsy bits and pieces, one a day, advent calendar style.

From the brilliant Mathigon site, see Puzzles 2020, and why not have a look back to their puzzles from earlier years…

From Matthew Scroggs – try his Advent Puzzles; behind each day (except Christmas Day), there is a puzzle with a three-digit answer. Matthew is awarding prizes to ten randomly selected people who solve all the puzzles, see mscroggs.co.uk for details.

Alternatively how about a Christmas Revision Calendar from Access Maths? Scroll right down this collection of very helpful GCSE Revision Resources for three Christmas Calendars, one for KS3, one for Foundation and one for Higher, also available are Christmas revision activities.

Alternatively, try this higher GCSE revision quiz, very attractively presented as an Advent calendar, answers are included.

Alex Pett created his advent calendar complete with history and problems for each day. Alex has provided a pdf version or use as a Google document. For an Activeinspire resource, try this version.

# Christmas 2018

See Christmas Resources for the always updated Christmas collection.

Jonathan Hall has given his Simultaneous Grids a festive flavour!

From the brilliant Transum Mathematics try the Christmas activities. Try ChrisMaths for example or the Christmas Numbers activity.

These Advent Calendars have problems for every age from young Primary age children to A Level (UK age 16-18).

The Advent Calendar Collection, of course, include the Nrich calendars. For more Christmas Nrich resources try Christmas Chocolates    Christmas Trees      Sums of Powers – A festive Story and Elf Suits – which looks good for thinking about systematic listing strategies!

From Teachitmaths, create a masterpiece! Mistletoe & lines; the description reads ‘Practise your graph drawing skills with a Christmassy theme! Plot the given points to draw a Christmas tree, then add your own lines of tinsel, giving the equation of each one.’ The pdf resource is free, you just need to register with the site. Further Christmas activities are available.

For more plotting, try this ATM open resource, Santa Plotting. Plot the points given and note the challenge questions at the end.

Craig Barton has published the TES Maths Christmas Collection which has a large collection of very varied activities which come highly recommended by teachers. Craig has helpfully categorised the resources as you may need them. From earlier years some personal favourites include Christmas Countdown (which although designed for daily use I have also used as an end of term activity) and Santa’s Reindeer (logic and number properties) both of which I have successfully used in class. Try this Twelve days of Christmas algebra activity or describe the Christmas tree here using inequalities.  This Operation Christmas Tree Excel resource makes a rather nice starter.

On TES we have a complete set of relays from Chris Smith; my classes have enjoyed his Valentine and Summer relays, I think we’ll use the Christmas relay to complete this term! You can find more excellent resources from Chris on TES and follow him on Twitter here.

As with all these relays from Chris – all the answers are provided – brilliant!

These GCSE Maths Christmas Puzzles from chuckieirish look good as do the Christmas Puzzles from ryansmailes. Also from ryansnailes, try a Christmas Maths Activities Booklet.

Oxford University Press have some great free resources including some Christmas themed problems for your GCSE students.

Another set of Higher (Geometry) problems is here. I like their festive Venn Diagrams, they would make a nice introduction / reminder on Venn diagrams for younger students.

From MEI, the November / December 2017 M4 Magazine includes an excellent collection of 10 puzzles and challenges for your students. Full teacher notes and solutions are included and the problems are ready for you to project for your classes.

MEI’s M4 Magazine archives (GCSE resources are indexed by topic) include many teaching resources, note also MEI’s Newsletters.

TheMyMaths team release free Christmas activities and worksheets. The team have helpfully collected these activities here on MyMaths. (MyMaths 2017 collection)

Here’s a Christmas tree on the Desmos Graphing Calculator site. Note this is simply a collection of lines and circles, as you can see from the syntax it is very easy to restrict x or y values.

How about a Desmos present to review equations of lines? This Christmas present graph makes a good starter.

I also created a version where the lines are all black which means I can easily change the colour of just one of the items to clearly display each.

For more on getting creative with Desmos, see Graph Art on Mathematics for Students.

Dr Matthew Lettington of Cardiff University has helped Admiral create an online tool to calculate how many baubles and fairy lights are needed for the perfect Christmas tree. Answer four questions to find out how many baubles and the length of fairy lights you need!

Mostly for younger children, Top Marks have put their favourite Christmas Activities together.

If you are creating any resources yourself you might want to install some Christmas fonts! (shown here: christmas lights, christmas tree and kingthings christmas)

…and a few more Christmas resources:

We could do the annual calculation and work out how many gifts are received over the 12 days of Christmas. Murray Bourne has all the answers and more on squareCircleZ or have a look at this YouTube video.

On the subject of videos, try a video advent calendar from Numberphile!

Using the excellent MacTutor History of Mathematics archive we learn that Christmas Day 1642 was celebrated on Newton’s birthday in England.

click on the image …

Christmas 2018 WolframAlpha count and other information you probably are not too worried about for Christmas Day!

Wishing you all a very Happy Christmas and New Year. Thank you for reading and for all the various comments. Have a wonderful and well-deserved break when we get to the holidays!

December…it’s that time of year again…!

And so to the annual update on Mathematical Advent Calendars. We can start this year with a new Advent Calendar resource; checking the new resources from Teachit Maths, note the Interactive advent calendar. Teachit Maths have made this a free sample resource available to everybody. (Remember that the free subscription on this excellent site includes hundreds of high-quality pdf resources.) Teachit Maths describe the resource as an advent calendar in the form of a presentation focusing mainly on mathematics. Suitable for KS3/4. (KS3/4 is UK age 11-16). For each day you will reveal a festive fact, joke, teaching idea, activity or game.

From Andy Lutwyche we have his Christmas Advent Calendar which covers lots of different topics in number, algebra, shape & space and data and gets progressively more difficult as you go on.

Also from Andy, try his Advent Calendar – Solving Linear Equations. Students answer the questions (the solutions are 1 to 24) and each answer links to a word; when the words are put in numerical order an entire joke is revealed! And another…for older students, Differentiation Advent Calendar where students are asked to find the gradient of a curve at a given point. Cheesy joke included!

Also on TES you can find an excellent calendar from Mark Dawes.

This is a lovely resource with over 30 problem-solving tasks for use in maths lessons in December. Suitable for starter activities, they span a range of abilities in KS3 and KS4. As well as the calendar the resource includes worksheets for some of the problems and an Excel file showing the difficulty of the tasks.

I do like Mark’s suggestions for use in class, he has given instructions for manipulating the resource so teachers can choose the problem they want for any day!

For a collection of starters aimed at KS3 students try this Christmas Maths Advent Starter Calendar. This provides a nice mix of activities.

J Calderwood has provided three Advent Calendars – Advanced Higher, HIgher and N5 Maths for Scottish Students. A great revision resource which could be adapted for different courses.

From a favourite site, where you can find so many excellent resources, Transum has an Advent Calendar. Behind each door, you will find a Christmaths activity, laugh at a cracker joke and solve a mathematical word puzzle.
(See this post for more on Transum.)

Try this Mathsvent Calendar from Phil Bruce. For December 1st (Saturday – so I think Friday would be a good day to start on the Advent Calendars!) put the baubles in size order along the tinsel starting with the smallest at the bottom.

Very usefully, you can find all 24 puzzles listed by topic. These puzzles are great, extensions are given for many of the problems too.

Nrich has published their annual Advent Calendars – one for Primary and one for Secondary. Secondary students and teachers are encouraged to print off dotty grids and circle templates to help with this year’s advent challenges. The Primary advent calendar focusses on activities and games using Dice.

Both Nrich and Plus Magazine have published wonderful collections of Advent resources, clearly, for an Advent Calendar, the year does not matter so we have lots of choices!

From Nrich in 2017 we have a calendar for Primary and one for Secondary each containing twenty-four problem-solving activities, one for each day in the run-up to Christmas. The secondary tasks come from the excellent Short Problems collection. (I will update this post with any new Advent resources from Nrich).

You can, in fact, find a whole collection of advent calendars on Nrich and as already mentioned, the year doesn’t matter! Note the different themes available – a Sudoku for each day perhaps? Or a tangram? Maybe you want to play a game?

From Plus Magazine, the Plus 2018 Advent Calendar features favourite Plus podcasts; to quote Plus:

“From the secrets of the Universe to the maths of football stadiums, there should be something there for everyone.”

Like Nrich, you can find a whole collection of Advent Calendar resources from Plus Magazine. The 2017 Advent Calendarfor example, brings you some of their favourite Plus videos.

Alternatively how about a Christmas Revision Calendar from Access Maths? Scroll right down this collection of very helpful GCSE Revision Resources for two Christmas Calendars, one for Foundation and one for Higher.

We should celebrate the women in STEM subjects, try these Advent Calendar posts.

Did you know that Maria Gaetana Agnesi was the first woman to write a Maths textbook?
(Thank you @MEIMaths  for sharing this.)

Alex Pett created his advent calendar complete with history and problems for each day. Alex has provided a pdf version or use as a Google document.