At St Mark's CE Primary School, we provide an ambitious, broad and connected maths curriculum. Pupils understand the purpose behind their learning and to apply their knowledge to their everyday lives. Discreet lessons are sequentially planned and alongside weekly maths challenges at children’s own level.
We focus on pupils acquiring a deep, long-term, secure and adaptable understanding of the subject:
- Time is spent teaching the fundamentals, e.g. number and place value, in a step-by-step way to allow children to consolidate their understanding.
- We place emphasis on the use of concrete resources and pictorial representations at all ages, to enable children to fully understand concepts and principals, before and alongside being presented with abstract calculations and questions.
- Domains are revisited throughout each school year, and from one year group to the next to reinforce the learning.
- We provide teaching and opportunities to practice so that pupils improve their fluency.
- We ensure children develop the necessary skills to enable them to think deeply about maths, acquiring maths knowledge that can be recalled quickly, transferred, and applied in different contexts.
- We expect pupils to reason and problem solve regularly in each domain block.
e.g. Pupils in Years 1 and 2 use measure to make fruit cocktails, as well as developing an understanding of direction in their Fabulous Farnborough project. In Years 3 and 4, the children further understand the number system to aid their comprehension of chronology in History, as well as comparing the temperatures in different locations. Accuracy in measurement is refined during the ‘Out of the Shadows’ project. In Years 5 and 6, Maths is successfully applied in the ‘All the fun of the fair’ project, as making solid constructions requires accuracy in measure and net construction.
In the Early Years, mathematical knowledge is taught through play, small groups or one to one and in short whole class inputs. The learning is revisited regularly through song, stories and games.
In Key Stage 1, Maths is taught as 5 daily lessons of 45 minutes. This is taught as a whole class with differentiation for the two-year groups. In addition to these lessons, there is counting and talking about time throughout the day and weekly maths challenges.
In Key Stage 2, Maths is taught as 5 daily lessons of 1 hour . In addition to this, there is time to develop fluency maths challenges. This is taught as a whole class with different expectations for each of the year groups. Some lessons are taught as single year groups to ensure all areas of learning are covered.
In all maths lessons, teaching and learning is carefully planned with clear end points for each term. We aim to provide children with time in each topic to help them gain a deeper understanding and make connections. The maths curriculum is a spiral curriculum with most domains taught termly and revisited, building on prior learning. Learning is applied within projects, such as data in Science, measure in DT and direction in Geography.
To ensure we offer comprehensive, incremental and recursive coverage of the National Curriculum for Maths, we closely follow the Hamilton mixed year curriculum plans (except the EYFS). These have been devised by experts, are constantly reviewed and improved. We believe that by following this curriculum we give our children the greatest opportunity for mathematical success. In the EYFS, the children follow the White Rose scheme and learn maths through a mixture of direct teacher-led activities and by self-directed time, with trained adults on hand to enhance their mathematical thinking through play and exploration. The children learn a broad range of maths in line with the Early Years Framework.
Teachers assess how well pupils are retaining and applying the content throughout lessons and during daily marking. This ongoing assessment informs planning. Summative assessments happen termly using PUMA assessments and end of year optional SATs, as well as statutory assessments in Key Stage 2.
We tackle misconceptions as they arise by revisiting frequently, pre teaching and do both ‘keep up’ and ‘catch up’ sessions as needed. This is informed by both continual assessment for learning and summative assessments. Sometimes we use intervention programmes like ‘snap’ or ‘plus 1’ or we use a bespoke programme, depending the identified needs of the pupils.
Children’s ongoing progress is monitored carefully by teachers. At planned data drops throughout the year, children are assessed against a range of age appropriate objectives. This provides a very clear picture of each child’s strengths and weaknesses and enables teachers to put in interventions or extra challenge where necessary.
Three times a year, children complete PUMA assessment tests in Mathematics, covering both arithmetic and problem solving/reasoning skills. Data is then compared to teacher assessments and the progress of each pupil is carefully considered in a meeting between the Headteacher, SENCo and Class Teacher(s). Plans are then put in place to ensure every child can reach their full potential. These assessments also enable teachers to identify whole class areas for improvement.
A programme of monitoring is in place to inform senior and subject leaders of consistency and progression in learning. This includes:
- Professional discussion
- Work scrutiny
- Pupil conferencing
- Lesson visits