National Curriculum Aims
The national curriculum for mathematics aims to ensure that all pupils:
- Become fluent in the fundamentals of Mathematics
- Are able to reason mathematically
- Can solve problems by applying their Mathematics
At Saint John’s the maths curriculum has been devised in accordance with our whole school vision and curriculum intent, including our Christian values. Care is taken to plan maths lessons which enable all children to flourish. 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 and the wider community.
Our aim is for every child to tackle the subject with delight and enjoyment as they develop their love of learning and encourage them to become curious learners. We aim to achieve this by encouraging discussions during our lessons to help children learn social skills, be respectful of others and to help them build positive friendships with their peers. The work set out for the children will be of a level that increases their resilience so that they can succeed in the future. We want all children to enjoy Mathematics and to experience success due to the cultural capital they have developed in the subject. We are committed to developing children’s curiosity about the subject, as well as an appreciation of the beauty and power of Mathematics.
Learning to count is a fundamental childhood skill that enables them to progress and be challenged throughout life. Maths is taught through a teaching for mastery approach whereby children explore and deepen their understanding of mathematics in small, coherent steps. Mathematical concepts are introduced using the ‘concrete, pictorial and abstract approach’; enabling all children to experience hands on learning and allowing them to have clear models and images to consistently further their understanding. Due to the variety of learning styles included in our maths curriculum children are able to develop other skills such as their vocabulary and demonstrate good citizenship skills among peers. This allows children to continually progress and develop skills not only useful in the classroom but also in later life. At Saint John’s, the maths curriculum is taught in blocks which allow the children to explore skills and knowledge in depth and gain secure understanding of particular subject matter. Key knowledge and skills are also revisited regularly to allow repetition to embed learning further.
A typical maths lesson will provide the opportunity for all children, regardless of their ability, to work through fluency, reasoning and problem-solving activities. Numbers are a universal language allowing children from all communities and ethnic backgrounds to work together cohesively. By building confidence, resilience and a passion for maths, we can show that whatever their prior experience or preconceptions, maths is an exciting adventure that everyone can enjoy, value and master!
At Saint John’s, our Maths teaching across the school places an emphasis upon a mastery approach and follows the White Rose Maths Scheme of learning, thus ensuring whole school consistency and progression. Lessons are taught daily in each class with a balance of whole class work, group teaching, practical tasks as well as individual practice. We believe in the importance of following the concrete-pictorial-abstract approach (CPA) as a means of developing secure understanding of mathematical concepts which can then be applied to a variety of contexts through reasoning and problem-solving tasks.
Key aspects of maths at Saint John’s;
- Children are taught using the small steps plan of progression to allow children to develop a secure understanding and provide a gradual development of skills
- The use of CPA is a fundamental part of mastery in mathematics for all learners – not just those pupils who struggle with Maths. The use of concrete resources and pictorial representations both scaffold and strengthen understanding and are widely used as a teaching and learning tool from Foundation Stage to Year 6.
- Each daily maths lesson will start with ‘Flashback’ questions enabling children to recall skills that have been taught both recently and earlier in the school year; this supports both retrieval practice and securing learning to long-term memory
- Lesson structure is based upon ‘Practise It’, ‘Apply It’ and ‘Deepen It’ tasks which all children have access to with a lesson. This allows pupils to practise the skills being taught as well as develop their understanding of concepts further through the use of reasoning and problem-solving questions which are integral to developing their mathematical thinking.
- We are committed to pupils becoming fluent and secure in their knowledge of Times Tables and Related Division Facts by the end of Year 4. Our pupils engage in regular low risk tasks on TimesTables Rockstars and we provide parents with Times Table key skills on the termly Maths Learning Focus sheets that are sent home.
- We ensure that all pupils are invested in their learning and are making positive contributions to lesson through the use of questioning and modelling
- The MLF sheets also provide parents with a snapshot of some of the learning that will take place during the term as well as key questions and vocalically that parents can use with their child at home.
- Teachers carry out formative assessment in each session and feedback is given to children verbally, through self/peer marking and also marking of tasks. Summative assessment is also completed at the end of each block of learning / term. Both forms of assessment are used to inform future lessons as well as any additional intervention support required.
- Pupils are seated in mixed ability groups; however, teachers may group children by ability if they feel it best suits the needs of the children with a particular lesson.
- Where possible intervention is provided within the lesson or shortly after the lesson. At times, children may require further intervention to secure concepts so they are given ‘short term’ interventions and this information is recorded on our Intervention Maps. Interventions may include the use of Ready to Progress criteria and Plus 1 / 2 resources. Teachers keep daily records as to who requires additional support during a lesson as well as recording children who are absent for a lesson / series of lessons to ensure that they are able to ‘catch-up’ with missed concepts.
- 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 the year group curriculum, appropriate learning is provided to ensure their progress.
By implementing the intent, children should be confident in the following areas:
- being fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics so that they develop conceptual understanding and the ability to recall and apply knowledge rapidly and accurately.
- solving problems by applying their mathematics to a variety of problems with increasing sophistication, including in unfamiliar contexts and to model real-life scenarios
- reasoning mathematically by following a line of enquiry and develop and present a justification, argument or proof using mathematical language.
- having an appreciation of number and number operations, which enables mental calculations and written procedures to be performed efficiently, fluently and accurately to be successful in mathematics.
Monitoring has shown that children, across the school, find enjoyment and fun in learning Mathematics. The children have a positive mind-set towards Maths and their learning. They are appropriately engaged and there is evidence of challenge for all. Children demonstrate pride in their work, both in terms of presentation and understanding.
Please your child's class webpage to find the termly Maths Learning Focus sheets - MLFs.
Below is a quick reference guide which shows the methods used at each stage for the four main operations - addition, subtraction, multiplication and division.
Below is our Calculation Policy.