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Chinese maths textbooks to be sold in UK for first time

23/03/2017 Joanna

British teachers will soon be able to utilise maths textbooks originally developed for use in China's high-performing maths teaching system for the first time.

A deal has been signed by Collins Learning - part of HarperCollins Publishing - and Shanghai Century Publishing Group to translate the Real Shanghai Mathematics textbook series into English and bring them to the UK from September onwards, reports China Daily.

The 36-book series utilises a mastery approach to instil basic numeracy knowledge and skills, with the goal of accelerating progression to advanced numeracy techniques. The books have already been used by the National Centre for Excellence in the Teaching of Mathematics to train British teachers.

This deal builds on a programme announced last year to provide £41 million in funding to 8,000 primary schools in England over four years to support wider adoption of the maths mastery principle, which focuses on ensuring children can demonstrate a deep understanding of a given concept before moving on.

Mastery is a technique that is commonly used in Asian cities such as Shanghai, Singapore and Hong Kong, which are among the best-performing regions in the world in terms of maths achievement.

Collins Learning hopes to gain an official endorsement from the British government for its Real Shanghai Mathematics textbook series ahead of the September launch.

Colin Hughes, Collins Learning's managing director, said: "To my knowledge, this has never happened in history before - that textbooks created for students in China will be translated exactly as they have been developed and sold for use in British schools.

"This development arises from increasingly successful collaboration between Shanghai and the British government, aimed at raising standards of mathematics education in UK schools by adopting the excellent approach that places Shanghai as a world leader in mathematics teaching."

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