1. A brief history
This site started out as a small collection of pages that I created for my students. The early versions contained a lot of pictures, puzzles and brainteasers – many of which are still here in the fun and games section.
I didn’t set out to have more than a few pages, but over the years I added more and more material – with the result that my site grew into a rather chaotic mess.
Eventually I had to admit that it was time for some serious updating: I couldn’t find things on my own site, it was very dated and I was totally fed up with vistas of pink.
I marked the site’s ten year anniversary with a major revamp. A lot of the early content is still online, but the new version of MoreThanMaths.com is a lot more flexible and user-friendly – I hope this version lasts as long as the last one!
2. My aims
I started this site for my own students, with the aim of sharing some of the things that I love about maths. That’s still my aim, but I’m also trying to develop some learning materials that are freely available. I’m not aiming for coverage of the whole maths curriculum (this is something I do in my rather limited spare time), just areas where I feel there’s a gap – especially for materials that explain things simply.
3. Safety and privacy
No student’s personal information is allowed to appear on this site. That includes full names; students who have work displayed on the site are identified only by their first names, initials or nicknames.
This site uses WordPress.com Stats and Google Analytics, because they tell me which sections of the site are actually being used. This helps me to decide what to develop next.
4. The technical stuff
There are also a great many plugins that make this site run efficiently. Akismet does a superb job of keeping the unwanted SPAM comments under control. Breadcrumb NavXT, List category posts (which maintains the lists of links on the page for parents) and Table of Contents Creator (which creates the site map) help me to make content easy to find. NextGEN Gallery is the best thing since Vision On. (What do you mean you’ve never heard of Vision On? Ask your Mum or Dad…) Feedburner Feedsmith (in conjunction with Google Feedburner) and Subscribe to Comments make it easy to subscribe. SwfObj is the easiest plugin for embedding Flash files (it does even more than it says on the tin). User Locker, WordPress Database Backup and WP Super Cache all do a great job of keeping the site secure and functional. The Student Contributor Dashboard plugin is used on all of the class pages, it simplifies the job of creating posts and keeps students safely away from any comments that haven’t been checked yet.
I’d like to offer many, many thanks to the people who developed all of these and who were kind enough to share the results of their hard work.
Finally, hosting is by Bluehost – who are both reliable and affordable.