Supporting English as an additional language or dialect – coordinates

Students can:

  • locate a position using coordinates
  • apply number patterns to problems involving position.

Implications for teaching

Interpreting information from graphs and diagrams is often challenging, particularly for EAL/D students. In NAPLAN, EAL/D students experience difficulty with these types of questions. However, when given the opportunity to engage in meaningful talking and listening activities, EAL/D students can begin to develop and consolidate a working knowledge of this unique language in a range of contexts.

EAL/D students need to be able to:

  • use visual supports such as diagrams, graphs, or pictures to interpret meaning
  • use some specialised words in appropriate context (plan)
  • use simple past and continuous tenses with some consistency.

Thinking pairs

The thinking pairs and collaborative group work activities which feature in the following teaching sequences provide more speaking times for second language learners to interact with their peers. This allows less confident speakers opportunities to construct and practise the target language while developing the specific English language skills required to articulate mathematical concepts and strategies.

The teaching sequences will provide opportunities for students to:

  • exchange information and solve problems
  • take turns to practise concepts and metalanguage
  • share responsibility for clarifying their own meaning
  • genuinely seek new information
  • recast the target language, rephrase ideas, restate problems and refine meaning.

Lesson 1

There are two activities in Lesson 1.

Activity 1: Strategies for developing background knowledge

Activity 2: strategies for developing background knowledge

Game 5: Cat and Mouse Coordinates game

Lesson 2

Activity 1: Representing real life or how can we draw the cat and mouse coordinates game?


Lesson 3

Activity 1: practising position and patterns to move from the concrete to the abstract (diagrams)

Activity 2: moving from the concrete to the abstract (diagrams) continued

Classroom 3B

Lesson 4

Activity 1: higher order thinking

Evaluation task

View/print (PDF 323.08KB)


Australian curriculum

ACMMG065: Create and interpret simple grid maps to show position and pathways, ACMMG090: Use simple scales, legends and directions to interpret information contained in basic maps

NSW syllabus

MA2-17MG: Uses simple maps and grids to represent position and follow routes, including using compass directions. MA3-17MG: Locates and describes position on maps using a grid reference system.

Teacher resources

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