Our aim of teaching mathematics at our school are to ensure that all pupils become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics, including through varied and frequent practice with increasingly complex problems over time, so that pupils develop conceptual understanding and the ability to recall and apply knowledge rapidly and accurately.
We aim to do this through teaching the mastery approach to maths. Mastery of Maths means a deep, long-term, secure and adaptable understanding of the subject of Maths. This way of learning is something that we want pupils to acquire, so a ‘mastery Maths curriculum’ aims to help pupils, over time, acquire mastery of the subject. There are a number of elements which will help children develop mastery of Maths;
- fluency (rapid and accurate recall and application of facts and concepts)
- a growing confidence to reason mathematically
- the ability to apply Maths to solve problems and to test hypotheses
Mastery of Maths, which will build gradually as a child goes through school, is a tool for life, and immeasurably more valuable than the short-term ability to answer questions in tests or exams.
We will take longer over each mathematical topic (shape, measure, addition etc.) so that early understanding is cemented deeply within each child.
Main Goal- Everyone Can Succeed
As a school we believe that all students can succeed in Mathematics. We do not believe that there are children who can do Maths and those that can’t. A positive mindset for mathematics and strong subject knowledge are key to children’s success in mathematics.
At St Mary’s our intent for mathematics is to teach a rich, balanced and progressive curriculum using Maths to reason, problem solve and develop fluent conceptual understanding in each area.
We are committed to ensuring that children are able to recognise the importance of Maths in the wider world and that they are also able to use their mathematical skills and knowledge confidently in their lives in a range of different contexts. We want all children to enjoy Mathematics and to experience success in the subject, with the ability to reason mathematically. We are committed to developing children’s curiosity about the subject, as well as an appreciation of the beauty and power of Mathematics.
Maths is a journey and a long-term goal, achieved through exploration, clarification, practice and application over time. At each stage of learning, children should be able to demonstrate a deep, conceptual understanding of the topic and be able to build on this over time.
There are 3 levels of learning:
Shallow learning: surface, temporary, often lost
Deep learning: it sticks, can be recalled and used
Deepest learning: can be transferred and applied in different contexts
The deep and deepest levels are what we are aiming for by teaching maths using the Mastery approach.
Our mastery approach to the curriculum is designed to develop children’s knowledge and understanding of mathematical concepts from the Early Years through to the end of Y6.
Objects, pictures, words, numbers and symbols are everywhere. The mastery approach incorporates all of these to help children explore and demonstrate mathematical ideas, enrich their learning experience and deepen understanding. Together, these elements help cement knowledge so pupils truly understand what they’ve learnt.
All pupils, when introduced to a key new concept, should have the opportunity to build competency in this topic by taking this approach. Pupils are encouraged to physically represent mathematical concepts. Objects and pictures are used to demonstrate and visualise abstract ideas, alongside numbers and symbols.
Concrete – children have the opportunity to use concrete objects and manipulatives to help them understand and explain what they are doing.
Pictorial – children then build on this concrete approach by using pictorial representations, which can then be used to reason and solve problems.
Abstract – With the foundations firmly laid, children can move to an abstract approach using numbers and key concepts with confidence.
Teaching and Learning, Content and Sequence
In school, we follow the national curriculum and use Power Maths (DFE approved) Scheme of Work as a guide to support teachers with their planning and assessment.
At the start of each new topic, key vocabulary is introduced and revisited regularly to develop language acquisition, embedding as the topic progresses.
Children are taught through clear modelling and have the opportunity to develop their knowledge and understanding of mathematical concepts.
The mastery approach incorporates using objects, pictures, words and numbers to help children explore and demonstrate mathematical ideas, enrich their learning experience and deepen understanding at all levels.
Children work on the objective at whatever entrance stage they are assessed as being at. Children can ACQUIRE the skill, APPLY the skill or DEEPEN the skill within the lesson.
Children move through the different stages of their learning at their own pace.
Children who have shown their understanding at a deep level within the unit, will have opportunities to apply these skills in a GREATER DEPTH activity.
This should be challenging and ensure that children are using more than just one skill to be able to answer the mathematical problems.
Reasoning and problem solving are integral to the activities children are given to develop their mathematical thinking.
Resources are readily available to assist demonstration of securing a conceptual understanding of the different skills appropriate for each year group.
Children are encouraged to explore, apply and evaluate their mathematical approach during investigations to develop a deeper understanding when solving different problems / puzzles.
A love of maths is encouraged throughout school via links with others subjects, applying an ever growing range of skills with growing independence.
Children with additional needs are included in whole class lessons and teachers provide scaffolding and relevant support as necessary. For those children who are working outside of the year group curriculum, individual learning activities are provided to ensure their progress.
Children in EYFS develop their mathematical skills through two ELG’s : Number and Numerical patterns.
For the ‘Number’ focus the aim is for the children to:
a, have a deep understanding of number to 10, including the composition of each number;
b, be able to subitise (recognise quantities without counting) up to 5;
c, to be able to automatically recall (without reference to rhymes, counting or other aids) number bonds up to 5 (including subtraction facts) and some number bonds to 10, including double facts.
For the ‘Numerical patterns’ focus the aim is for children to :
A, be able to verbally count beyond 20, recognising the pattern of the counting system;
B, be able to Compare quantities up to 10 in different contexts, recognising when one quantity is greater than, less than or the same as the other quantity;
C, explore and represent patterns within numbers up to 10, including evens and odds, double facts and how quantities can be distributed equally.
Key stage 1
The principal focus of mathematics teaching in key stage 1 is to ensure that pupils develop confidence and mental fluency with whole numbers, counting and place value. This should involve working with numerals, words and the 4 operations, including with practical resources [for example, concrete objects and measuring tools].
At this stage, pupils should develop their ability to recognise, describe, draw, compare and sort different shapes and use the related vocabulary. Teaching should also involve using a range of measures to describe and compare different quantities such as length, mass, capacity/volume, time and money.
By the end of year 2, pupils should know the number bonds to 20 and be precise in using and understanding place value. An emphasis on practice at this early stage will aid fluency.
Pupils should read and spell mathematical vocabulary, at a level consistent with their increasing word reading and spelling knowledge at key stage 1.
Key stage 2
The principal focus of mathematics teaching in lower key stage 2 is to ensure that pupils become increasingly fluent with whole numbers and the 4 operations, including number facts and the concept of place value. This should ensure that pupils develop efficient written and mental methods and perform calculations accurately with increasingly large whole numbers.
At this stage, pupils should develop their ability to solve a range of problems, including with simple fractions and decimal place value. Teaching should also ensure that pupils draw with increasing accuracy and develop mathematical reasoning so they can analyse shapes and their properties, and confidently describe the relationships between them. It should ensure that they can use measuring instruments with accuracy and make connections between measure and number.
By the end of year 4, pupils should have memorised their multiplication tables up to and including the 12 multiplication table and show precision and fluency in their work.
Pupils should read and spell mathematical vocabulary correctly and confidently, using their growing word-reading knowledge and their knowledge of spelling.
The principal focus of mathematics teaching in upper key stage 2 is to ensure that pupils extend their understanding of the number system and place value to include larger integers. This should develop the connections that pupils make between multiplication and division with fractions, decimals, percentages and ratio.
At this stage, pupils should develop their ability to solve a wider range of problems, including increasingly complex properties of numbers and arithmetic, and problems demanding efficient written and mental methods of calculation. With this foundation in arithmetic, pupils are introduced to the language of algebra as a means for solving a variety of problems. Teaching in geometry and measures should consolidate and extend knowledge developed in number. Teaching should also ensure that pupils classify shapes with increasingly complex geometric properties and that they learn the vocabulary they need to describe them.
By the end of year 6, pupils should be fluent in written methods for all 4 operations, including long multiplication and division, and in working with fractions, decimals and percentages.
Pupils should read, spell and pronounce mathematical vocabulary correctly.