Woking Maths Tutor

Fiona Gardener is a maths tutor based in Woking, supporting students from Key Stage 2 to A level

I offer friendly one-to one mathematics tuition for students from Key Stage 2 to A level. I am based in Woking, but due to the flexibility of online tuition, I can support students in any area. I also offer support for specific individual needs such as the QTS numeracy test and the UCAT quantitative reasoning. Sessions are tailored to address the particular needs of the student.

Operating as usual


Just a shout out to my A level students, wishing good luck for the first pure paper tomorrow. Keep calm and take time to read the questions, write down every step of your workings and you'll be fine.


Good luck to all the year 6 students taking SATs this week. Just do your best and you'll be fine!


As the GCSE exams get properly underway today we are now only a week away from the first Maths paper. Here's wishing all students a lot of luck with all the subjects, but especially with Maths 😀. Keep calm, make sure you read the question properly and take it steady, you'll be fine. With both papers 2 and 3 coming after the half term break try to keep the momentum going over half term, if you can, as paper 2 is the first one after the break and you want to still be "in the zone". Good luck - you've got this!


It's that time of year when I start to see the worry lines appear in the faces of my students as they realise how close the exams are getting, so imagine my delight to receive this message from a student last night as they sent me their homework ...."Looking forward to a refreshing Maths lesson after the load of DT coursework I've had to complete every evening this week!" It brought a real smile to my face 😀

Photos from Woking & Sam Beare Hospice and Wellbeing Care's post 07/03/2024

This event may be of interest to Year 11s and any Year 10s who are already planning for next year. It's the chance to pick up a bargain, look fantastic on prom night and support a much needed local charity. Everyone wins.


Happy New Year!!
The year seems to have got off to a flying start with Maths sessions already up and running and my inbox is being filled with homework that students have completed over the Christmas break. All we need now is for the rain to stop!
For those students in year 11, if you haven't already heard, just before Christmas the Department for Education announced that formula sheets will be available for the GCSE Maths exams as they have been for the last two years. They will also be available in November for anyone needing to retake, but after that the exams will be held as they were pre-pandemic with only specific formulae being given.
I will re-iterate the advice I gave last year to any students intending to continue Maths to A level, and that is that I strongly recommend that you learn all of the formulae, even though they will be available. You will be expected to know them for A level and the sooner they are in your memory, the easier life will be.
Good luck to any students taking mocks in the next few weeks and here's hoping that 2024 will be a successful year for all.


As the term draws to a close, I just wanted to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. It's been another busy one, so hopefully the festive break will give everyone chance to recharge their batteries ready for the challenges ahead.
Have a good one🎁🎉☃️🎄🎅


Just a quick post to wish lots of good luck to all those students sitting their GCSE Maths exams this week and next week. Remember to keep calm, read the question a few times before you start to answer and then read the question again at the end to make sure you've answered the question they have asked and that you've left your answer in the correct format. You can do it!!

The new school for Surrey's maths geniuses 08/10/2023

A potentially interesting local offering for those students looking to study Maths at A Level. As with all brand new schools, there is no track record to look at but it might be worth exploring as one of your options. I'll certainly be taking an interest to see how it develops in the coming years.

The new school for Surrey's maths geniuses The headteachers say they are excited to welcome science and maths enthusiasts

Man who got A in maths left sweating by SATS test for 10-year-olds 17/09/2023

This made me smile.
The first error mentioned is quite common. Children learn all the written methods at primary school and are often quite confident at age 11. They move to secondary school where calculators are allowed and the methods get forgotten.
If you don't use it you lose it!

Man who got A in maths left sweating by SATS test for 10-year-olds Dan was aiming for 100% on the test for primary school children. He didn't succeed


I spotted this picture today and thought I would share it as a great message for the start of the new term.
I often meet students who are afraid to get questions wrong so they would rather leave it blank than have a go.
So many times I hear myself saying "You don't get any marks for a blank piece of paper".
Getting something wrong can often be the first step to getting something right.
Have a great autumn term everyone. It was lovely to hear from students over the summer with their exam results and I look forward to full steam ahead from next week looking forward to helping with the challenges of the new school year.


The weather is unsettled so that's confirmation that the summer holidays have begun! I hope you all have a great summer and manage to find some fun things to do after the busy school year.
I will be kept busy as many regular students, as well as some new students, have asked for holiday tuition. It always surprises me how keen some students are to continue their maths studies in the holidays.
I look forward to seeing everyone else in September and hearing all your holiday stories.
And just a note to former GCSE and A level students - don't forget to let me know your results next month!


DON'T always believe what the papers say!
In my job as a maths tutor, I am often called upon to explain terms like interest, income tax, VAT, and the like. I feel it's really important that my students have a good understanding of the mathematical concepts that will affect their day to day lives.
So I'm afraid I couldn't not react to today's front page of the Daily Express, which quite frankly couldn't be more wrong, and so here is my lesson on the meaning of inflation, for any students who don't fully understand.
The rate of inflation is the percentage by which prices go up on average. If the rate of inflation is positive, prices are going up. The higher this rate, the faster prices are going up. If the rate of inflation falls (but is still above zero), prices are still going up but just at a slower rate.
However just because the rate of inflation falls it doesn't mean the actual increase is less year on year ..... take this example....
If something costs £100, and the annual rate of inflation is 10%, it will cost £110 at the end of the year, an increase of £10.
Imagine the following year, the rate of inflation falls to 9.5%. At the end of the year the item costs £120.45, an increase of £10.45. The increase is higher than the previous year despite a lower rate of inflation as the starting price was higher than before.
This is an example and it's worth noting that not all goods will follow the rate of inflation. Some will increase more, some will increase less. It's an average rate.
I don't want to get political but I do feel it's important for students to treat what they read in some newspapers and what they hear some politicians say with a degree of scepticism. If you have a good mathematical knowledge you can work it out for yourself!


And that's the end of another chapter. I have just finished my last year 13 A level session for this year ahead of the final paper (Stats and Mechanics) tomorrow. Good luck to all A level Maths students on the final stage tomorrow.
It's always lovely when students who I have worked with at GCSE choose to take Maths at A level, and come back for a second helping of me nagging them about the quality of their workings 🤣🤣!! It's sad to see them go but I look forward to hearing the results and where the next steps will take them.


Another end of an era as I have just finished my last session with this year's GCSE students, with the final paper taking place tomorrow. Good luck to you all - it's been a pleasure working with you, and please don't forget to get in touch in August when you have your results! Enjoy the summer!


So here's wishing all my A level students the best of luck tomorrow for the first Pure paper. As always keep calm and you'll be fine.
Also a message for GCSE students for Wednesday - Don't forget to take your calculators with you!! Good luck with paper 2 and remember to write down everything you have typed into your calculator.


So it's been a busy week for many students with the start of the GCSEs this week. Tomorrow sees the first Maths paper for both GCSE and IGCSE so I wanted to wish everyone taking these papers lots of luck. Just remember to keep calm, and take your time and read through each question a few times to make sure you understand the question. If you don't know how to get the answer, just look at the information they give you, sentence by sentence, and think what you could possibly work out. Anything that you write down is likely to earn you some marks, but if you leave it blank it's a guaranteed zero. Above all, keep calm. If you panic you won't be able to think clearly. You've got this!!


So the "exams term" is with us again. For anyone preparing to take the Edexcel Maths GCSE, Edexcel have published some useful revision checklists, one for each of the tiers (Foundation and Higher). During my sessions I will be passing these on to my students but if anyone else needs this and hasn't been given it at school, send me a message with the tier you need and I will pass it on.


So it's now 3 years since we were all told to stay at home, exams were cancelled and we faced the challenge of continuing all aspects of life in a remote, and somewhat alien, way.
I was fortunate in that I had already done a little tutoring online and had access to a great online classroom which had been developed specifically for maths tuition. However it was a real change for my students who had been used to face to face tuition, and parents were often naturally wary.
I am still amazed by and have great admiration for my students in the way that they adapted to very challenging circumstances. They're always sitting ready for their sessions when I connect with them, completed homework tasks regularly appear in my inbox and they have truly embraced the technology.
There have been so many gains - students were able to continue with their learning whilst testing positive for Covid (if they felt well enough); I now have full access to all my resources in each session, rather than just those I had room for in the boot of my car; students have copies of whiteboard notes from each session to look back on; tuition sessions have not disrupted family life in the student's home - to name but a few.
If you'd told me 3 years ago that I would build up a waiting list of students keen to have online tuition I would have been more than a little sceptical, but that happened in a few months.
I truly hope that we've seen the worst of the challenges and that things will continue to improve. And I believe that the adaptability that I have witnessed in my students is a good sign for the future. Onwards and upwards!
But seriously - is it really 3 years? Hopefully I'm not the only one whose sense of time has been affected by the pandemic?


Facebook has reminded me that I haven't posted anything here for a while, which got me thinking about what has kept me so busy. It certainly feels like each day is very full and even half term was busy with the keen students from my waiting list wanting to take advantage of some sessions. But generally thinking about why I have been so busy this week and last week has made me come up with a little tip for my students for the future ...... when we approach the next break from school and I kindly offer to set you some extra work to do over the holidays, if you're not keen then just say "Remember Fiona, if you set me extra work, you'll have extra marking to do after the holidays". That should work 🤣🤣🤣🤣


Having just logged out of my online classroom for the last time before Christmas, I thought I would take a moment to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
It's been a busy term and next term is looking to be even busier. It's always great to make the call and find my students there ready and waiting for their lessons. Let's hope the holidays will give everyone a chance to recharge their batteries in time for the new year.
Have a good one!

GSCE pupils to have extra help with exams next year 01/12/2022

Just to keep you updated, the consultation has concluded that GCSE maths students will be given a formula sheet with the exams next year.
However, learn a little lesson from the BBC. At the time of sharing this article the headline says GSCE instead of GCSE (I don't know whether they will correct it!), so that just shows how easy it is to make mistakes. Familiarity with formulae is recommended and if you do need to copy them from the sheet, make sure you copy them correctly!!
Also my advice to anyone planning to do A level maths - learn the formulae now as you will need to know them for A levels!

GSCE pupils to have extra help with exams next year In mathematics, physics and combined science, students will be provided with supporting material.


I couldn't resist sharing this .... often students struggle with certain methods but there's usually more than one way of tackling a problem. As long as you have a valid method in your maths toolbox you'll be fine!


I must be getting older as half terms seem to fly by so quickly. Here we are in half term that's the run up to Christmas when many schools hold their mock exams.
My advice to all students is to treat the mocks as seriously as you treat the real thing - good preparation for mocks will put you in a really good position for the summer.
As my students well know, I am a big fan of revision cards. They are as valuable in maths as they are in other subjects. Whenever you hit a topic where you need to look something up, pop that information on a revision card. Look at them regularly and they will really help.
Good luck with the new half term everyone and with whatever challenges come your way!

Photos from Woking Maths Tutor's post 13/09/2022

With online tuition becoming the new normal, many students say that coming into my online classroom is just like having me sitting next to them. Here's a taster of the things we can do in the classroom (that was developed for maths teaching) and the screenshots produced from the classroom that are emailed to students at the end of the lesson. With the Skype session running alongside we can see each other and the whiteboard all the time. Enjoy this little insight into the lessons.


This appealed to my sense of humour, but there's also a message for maths - just because you may be able to use a calculator, there's still scope for error. It pays to be able to work things out without a calculator!


As I post this I'm hearing it raining outside. That normally happens at the start of the school holidays, but, surprisingly, this year it's waited until the end. I hope you've all had a fantastic summer.
It's been lovely hearing from former students over the last couple of weeks with their well deserved exam results, especially considering how challenging the last couple of years has been.
I'm looking forward next week to catching up with those students who took a break over the summer and it's been great working with some of my regular students and some new ones over the holiday period.
As the new school year begins I wish you all the very best and hope that this is a school year without any of the disruptions of recent years, and good luck especially to those starting at new schools and embarking on new paths. Have a great term!!


I hope everyone has been enjoying the summer holidays so far and making the most of the lovely weather. Just in case maths has been forgotten in the holidays here's a little post to brighten your day.

A little math humor. 😉


So this evening I have had my last session with the last of this year's year 11 students as paper 3 is on Monday. Good luck to all of you and I look forward to hearing from you in August, with hopefully the results you deserve.


Here's wishing lots of luck to GCSE students tomorrow with the second maths paper and to A level students with their first paper. Don't forget to take your calculator with you!!

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Our Story

COVID-19 UPDATE: All sessions are now ONLINE using a virtual classroom with shared whiteboard. I canoffer online sessions to anyone in any location.

At other times, I offer friendly one-to one mathematics tuition for students from Key Stage 2 to A level in the Woking and Guildford areas. I also offer support for specific individual needs such as the QTS numeracy test and the UKCAT quantitative reasoning. Sessions are tailored to address the particular needs of the student.






Opening Hours

Monday 9am - 8:30pm
Tuesday 9am - 8:30pm
Wednesday 9am - 8:30pm
Thursday 9am - 8:30pm
Friday 9am - 6pm
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