Northampton Saints' Tom Wood "Tackling Numbers"
England’s latest rugby star, Tom Wood, is tackling something different today – numbers and a Year 4 class of eight to nine year olds at the local Collingtree Primary School.
The Saints back row forward is taking time out from preparations for tomorrow’s crucial last round Aviva Premiership Rugby clash with Leeds Carnegie to launch a new five week programme - ‘Tackling Numbers’ - which will use rugby to improve the maths skills of hundreds of Northamptonshire schoolchildren.
For Northampton Saints and Leeds Carnegie the maths are simple. If Saints win, they will secure a place in this season’s Aviva Premiership Rugby Semi Finals and Leeds Carnegie are highly likely to be relegated. If Leeds Carnegie win it’s highly likely they will stay up and Bath Rugby may pip Northampton Saints for the semi-final place.
The Saints, of course, are chasing English rugby union’s hallowed league and cup double after their defeat of Perpignan last Sunday secured their place in this season’s Heineken Cup Final against Ireland’s Leinster.
Today, however, the focus for Wood will be to kick off the teaching of kids the importance of basic numeracy and financial skills in everyday life through bringing maths to life in a practical and enjoyable way.
The rugby star will run through several activities with the Year 4 pupils including ‘Match Day’ mental maths which uses match day statistics to make maths fun and ‘Stadium Build’ which sees children using shapes to successfully build a rugby stadium.
He’ll then take the kids out onto the games pitch for some fun number-based rugby games designed especially for the programme.
Tackling Numbers is a joint initiative delivered by The 12 Premiership Rugby Clubs and MBNA, Europe’s largest credit card provider.
The scheme will be taken up by over 800 schools in England between this season and 2013. By the end of the 2011 summer term, 600 children at 20 Northampton schools will already have taken part in the scheme.
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