Workshops on the Sharp school and scientific calculator range

Over the years, we have done many workshops on how to use the Sharp EL-W535HT scientific calculator, and have recently added workshops on the Sharp EL-W506 advanced scientific calculator, the S25 (the Junior Quiz Calculator) and the brand new EL-W535SAB which will eventually replace the EL-W535HTB. We have often had requests for the workshop material and so we have posted them from newest to oldest for your convenience all in one place below. Please do let us know what you think and if you have any cool things that you do on your calculator that we don’t have here 🙂 If you would like the original powerpoints for your class, please send us a note via the contact us page, and we will send it through to you via email.


The S25 Workshops (Recommended for Grade 3 – 7).

The S25 mental maths and other functions workshop.

This workshop looks at the results we achieved with the mental maths drill functions in two schools in Johannesburg, as well as how to use the drill function on the S25. We also learned a short-cut to work out class marks very quickly (which you can do on any Sharp calculator), and learned about the pi and square root button.

The EL-W535SAB Workshops

Why mental is important for the future and other tips and tricks

Firstly, we looked at using drill mode to practice our mental maths. We then used table mode to find both factor pairs and multiples of numbers. We learned how to prime factorize using the calculator. This workshop also looked at the new functions available on the EL-W535SAB calculator – the Home button, Lowest common multiple and highest common factor of a set of numbers, as well as the integer divide button which is useful for teaching long/ short division. We looked at using the calculator to teach patterns and probability using the random functions. We also looked at time calculations and a short cut for calculating class marks.

The EL-W506 Workshops

The AMESA 2017 Technical Maths workshop

This workshop explains how to work with complex numbers, convert between degrees and radians, binary numbers, integration, conversions (we did ounces to grams), substitution into an expression, time calculations, Pythagoras, simultaneous equations and solving cubic equations.

The AMESA 2017 Maths Lit workshop

The Maths Literacy workshop focused on how to do calculations through buying a house, from the transfer fees to the bond repayments and then including a deposit as well. It also covered the basics of statistics, dealing with tax, doing conversions (again from ounces to grams), substitution and time questions.

The AMESA 2017 Maths Workshop

This workshop dealt with substitution, Pythagoras, differentiation at a point, solving two linear simultaneous equations, using the different random functions, programming your shortcut keys (the user defined D-keys). It also covered both uni-variate statistics and linear regression. Finally, the workshop also looked at using the EL-W506 to solve a cubic equation.


The EL-W535HTB Workshops (You can also use these for the EL-W535SAB – it has the same functions)

Binary, Complex numbers and other things we haven’t seen before.

This workshop is for the technical maths workshops, and offers an alternative to the EL-W506 calculator. It includes terminating and recurring decimals, surds, binary number conversions, a shortcut for Pythagoras with applications in complex numbers, factorizing and finding factor pairs, trigonometric graphs, how to use your shortcut keys, and changing between radians and degrees.


Simple and Compound interest and compounding intervals

This workshop breaks down how to simply and effectively teach simple and compound interest. It looks at changing different variables such as the interest and principle amount, and compounding intervals. Finally the workshop looks at solving annuities and showing your students how to see where they are in their payments.


Teaching Algebra

This workshop tackles teaching algebra particularly in the Senior phase. It includes topics like patterns, teaching the difference between constants and variables, substitution, and factorizing basic trinomials. There is also a section on teaching the basic straight line graph and allowing students to intuitively understand how the gradient and y-intercept affect a straight line.


Teaching Exponent Laws and Other Fun tricks

This workshop has a broad focus, from multiples and factors, to prime factors and using these to teach the highest common factor and lowest common multiple. It includes a shortcut for Pythagoras, and an easy way to answer time questions, as well as how to input fractions and calculate percentages. Finally, it also has a section on exponents – from the basics like squares and roots, to the actual laws of exponents.


Teaching Fractions

This workshop is particularly focused on intermediate phase maths (grade 4 – 6), and includes how to change between mixed numbers and improper fractions, as well as equivalent fractions and decimals. It shows how to calculate the fraction of a whole as well as percentages. It covers the properties of whole numbers, and includes the commutative, associate and distributive properties and how to demonstrate them on the calculator. Finally, it shows how to find multiples, factors and prime factors.


Teaching graphs

The is a comprehensive look at teaching the basics of graphs, from changing the gradient and y-intercept, to calculating the gradient from two points. It also includes a short cut for finding the equation of straight line using two points as well as finding the missing x- or y-coordinate.


The Basics – Maths Literacy

This workshop gives the basics of using a scientific calculator from a short cut for finding class marks (for the teachers) and then shows how to calculate with percentages – adding, subtracting, finding the percentage of a total, and finding the original value. How to do fractions, use the random function, substitution, time calculations and a Pythagoras shortcut are all included. Finally, doing basic statistics calculations are also included.


Why mental maths is important for the future

This workshop looks at where we use mental maths in other maths topics, and shows you how to do them on the calculator. Topics include multiples and factor pairs, prime factors and using them to find the lowest common multiple and highest common factor and patterns. Some other topics include time calculations, probability and a short cut to calculate class marks.


Data Handling and Probability

This workshop covers these two main topics. Under data handling or statistics we covered central tendency, standard deviation, regression and correlation, and interpolation and extrapolation. Under the heading of probability we looked at relative frequency vs theoretical probability, and the fundamental counting principle.


Improving Science and Maths in Public schools

This was a presentation made to ICT teachers and principles at an schools and ICT conference. It looked at what had already been done in the maths and science school arena, and made some suggestions for future projects. It also looked at who could implement these projects as well as the resources one would need in their own class to run their own projects.


Dealing with the ANA

With all the hype around the ANA’s two or three years ago, we looked at the results of the ANA’s for grade 6 and 9 and common issues that students  struggled with – these included: for grade 6 ~ mental maths, calculating time, multiples, remainders and patterns; and for grade 9 ~ roots, factorization (factor pairs and prime factors), percentages, exponents and Pythagoras.


Teaching ideas for Trigonometry

This workshop looked at all the things you could use your calculator for in Trigonometry – from Pythagoras, reciprocals and ratios to special angles and proving the CAST diagram. It looked at the effects of a, p and q on trigonometric graphs and at proving identities.


The In’s and Out’s of Probability

One of my favourite workshops. This workshop looked at different ways you could use both the simulator (emulator) and EL-W535HT in the class to teach probability. From doing simple experiments, to teaching the difference between relative frequency and theoretical probability, to an introduction to tree diagrams. The workshop also includes an application of probability in terms of finding the odds of winning the lottery.


Using the Sharp EL-W535HT Table mode to teacher Mathematical Literacy Concepts 

This workshop was broken up into two parts: The Basic Skills topics, and the Application Topics.

Basic skills included patterns, relationships and representations – graphs, finding the minimum and maximum, and choosing a rate scale.

The Application topics included finance – simple and compound interest,  the effect of changing the interest rate and exchange rates; and measurement – with a look at speed, distance and time.





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