St Albans maths teacher adds to Twitter fame with revision biscuits

PUBLISHED: 09:05 18 May 2019

St Albans teacher Ella Dickson painted biscuits for her further maths A-Level class. Picture: Ella Dickson

St Albans teacher Ella Dickson painted biscuits for her further maths A-Level class. Picture: Ella Dickson

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A creative St Albans teacher has gone viral on Twitter after icing biscuits with detailed mathematical equations.

St Albans teacher Ella Dickson painted biscuits for her further maths A-Level class. Picture: Ella DicksonSt Albans teacher Ella Dickson painted biscuits for her further maths A-Level class. Picture: Ella Dickson

Ella Dickson, 40, a maths teacher at Beaumont School, decorated the biscuits as a parting gift to her Year 13 further maths A-Level pupils, piping complex numbers, trigonometry, calculus and more.

Last summer Ella also started hand-painting rocks to look like children's book covers and hiding them in Marshalswick Library for people to find, attracting national publicity and receiving more than 16,000 likes on Twitter.

A few years ago she started icing biscuits to look like each of her pupils, before branching out into maths biscuits to help them with their revision.

Ella, who has two sons: Seth, 11, and Jonah, eight, said: "One year I just decided to do maths revision biscuits instead for my Year 11 GCSE class. The Year 13 class that just left were my Further Maths class that I taught for two years.

St Albans teacher Ella Dickson painted biscuits for her further maths A-Level class. Picture: Ella DicksonSt Albans teacher Ella Dickson painted biscuits for her further maths A-Level class. Picture: Ella Dickson

"They're very clever children who will go on to do wonderful things in the world. They're such a lovely class and they made me a mug with all my favourite maths on it.

"I teach some lovely kids. I'm very privileged to teach them."

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The biscuits were made in three stages. First, Ella cooked them and waited for them to cool down, then she put white icing on top before individually piping the maths problems and solutions.

St Albans teacher Ella Dickson painted biscuits for her further maths A-Level class. Picture: Ella DicksonSt Albans teacher Ella Dickson painted biscuits for her further maths A-Level class. Picture: Ella Dickson

She said: "[The piping] probably took me half an hour per biscuit. The writing's the bit that takes ages. I made about 10 in case some broke but only had to pipe six of them so they all went quite well.

"They really did enjoy it. I was sitting in the classroom with them thinking I should have made stones instead of biscuits so they could have kept them forever.

"My Year 12s are already saying 'what are you going to make for us next year?'"

Through her viral fame, Ella got back in touch with her A-Level physics teacher from 22 years ago, who messaged her after seeing the photos online.

The maths mug made by St Albans teacher Ella Dickson's A-Level class. Picture: Ella Dickson.The maths mug made by St Albans teacher Ella Dickson's A-Level class. Picture: Ella Dickson.

She has also made friends with librarians through her rock-painting, and has been nicknamed 'the rockstar of Marshalswick Library'.

Ella said: "There are a lot of very dedicated teachers at Beaumont and many teachers do nice things for their pupils.

"It's funny that it's gone viral. There's lots of teachers doing lots of lovely things that never get seen."

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