At St Matthew’s, we believe that maths is a vital part of children’s learning and is essential to our everyday life, as well as being one of the main building blocks for other subjects.
Our intent has therefore been built from EEF research, which demonstrates that pupils make more progress in a Maths Mastery Programme. We therefore use the well-sequenced and progressive ‘Power Maths White Rose’ curriculum and ‘Mastering Numbers’ programme, which cover the requirements set out within the Statutory Framework for the Early Years, the Educational Programmes, as well as the Development Matters and the National Curriculum for Key Stage 1.
Our intentions throughout are for all pupils to:
- build strong maths skills and a deep understanding of mathematical concepts.
- build up fluency to be able to quickly and efficiently recall facts and procedures, as well as to move flexibly between different contexts and representations of mathematics.
- reason mathematical, solve problems and explain their mathematical thinking.
- make connections across mathematical ideas and apply their maths knowledge in unfamiliar and cross-curricular areas.
- have a growth mindset and belief in their own mathematical ability.
- use the concrete, pictorial and abstract approach.
- use key mathematical vocabulary within the lesson, as well as cross-curricular.
We intent our maths lessons to:
- be interactive and well-paced.
- progressive, well-sequenced and matched to our pupil’s previous knowledge and learning needs.
- keep the class together by all moving forward at the same pace.
- keep pupils fully engaged.
- provide challenge and differentiation for all.
We intent to involve parents in their child’s learning through:
- Parents presentations.
- specific Maths homework, which relates to their child’s Maths lessons.
- open lessons.
We have a high expectation for all pupils to achieve well in maths through giving every pupil access to the same content and progressing through the curriculum at the same pace. Pupils are not accelerated through the curriculum and are appropriately challenged through differentiation, where scaffolding and constraints are used along with individual support and intervention, such as same day interventions. Challenges, that get pupils to explore, use and apply concepts, skills, and knowledge, as well as stretch thinking and reasoning, are provided within lessons and activities on a regular basis.
Differentiation of the curriculum is achieved through scaffolding and constraints, creating opportunities for depth, and through individual support such as same day interventions. The curriculum is methodical and cumulative, building in tasks that foster conceptual and procedural knowledge through practise and consolidation and carefully designed variation to build strong understanding of the underlying mathematical concepts.
Pupils who struggle are given extra support through additional practises, small group or 1:1 support or same day interventions so that any gaps can be lessened.
Our ‘Power Maths White Rose’ lessons include a:
- power up starter, which usually supports fluency in key number facts or recaps previous learning.
- discovery section, where pupils are faced with practical, real-life problems.
- sharing section, which is led by the teacher and highlights the variety of methods that can be used to solve a single problem, with input also being given by pupils – discussing their methods and strategies.
- Think together section, where pupils are working on what they have learned so far
- Practice section, where pupils work independently or with a teacher/ teaching assistant. Pupils are able to use mathematical structures and representations to support their understanding, as well as participate in deepening and strengthening activities.
- Reflect section, where opportunities are provided to check for misconceptions as well as pupils in-depth understanding of the targeted concept.
- Challenges throughout in order to deepen mathematical thinking, opportunities to make connections, to reason and problem-solve.
All of our lessons and activities encourage a concrete, pictorial, and abstract approach and aim to develop a deep understanding of maths through:
- Conceptual Understanding (tasks sequenced in logical progression to establish connections and make comparisons / multiple representations to develop different perspectives).
- Language and Communication (talk is an essential part of every lesson with specific vocabulary practised as well as verbal reasoning / use of mathematical language strengthens conceptual understanding by enabling pupils to explain and reason / talk tasks are part of every lesson to help this development).
- Mathematical Thinking (encouraging pupils to work systematically, as well as to generalise and seek out patterns).
Marking and feedback is a key part of pupils’ learning as they are able to respond to what their teacher is saying about their learning, giving them valuable opportunity and time to make corrections or to take their learning further through challenges set.
Each class has ‘maths meetings’ using ‘Mastering Numbers’ at least four times per week. It supports our pupils to develop a good number sense (being confident and flexible with numbers) and ability to secure firm foundations in fluency e.g. with number facts. We use ‘Mastering numbers’ as it focuses on key knowledge and understanding needed in Reception and progresses effectively through Key Stage 1. When our pupils participate in our ‘Mastering numbers’ programme, they use a range of different resources e.g. rekenrek, Numberblocks, etc.
Our pupils have furthermore a wide range of opportunities to apply and use their maths knowledge and skills across the curriculum e.g. in science, geography and history. Some examples of this are:
- Using stop watches to measure time e.g. in PE or Science
- Measuring distance in outdoor learning, PE or small world play in EYFS
- Counting up class dojos and adding the class totals together for celebration assembly
- Counting and totalling money donated for ‘wear it different’ day
- Use of timelines and dates in history and the passing of time
- Data collection and interpretation in science and geography
- Creating shapes at playtimes
The impact of our maths curriculum is measured both formally and informally through monitoring progress made by pupils throughout each year and progress towards end of year and end of key stage expectations – with the majority achieving very well, reaching at least expected by the end of Key Stage One, and with a good number of pupils working at greater depth.
We monitor and note pupils’ enjoyment of and engagement in maths through learning walks, book looks, pupil discussions and questionnaires as well as their level of confidence, resilience and growth mindset when doing maths tasks.
We can see the positive impact that the Maths Mastery approach has had on our pupils since using the ‘Power Maths White Rose’ curriculum and the ‘Mastering Numbers’ programme for example by how:
- confident our pupils are when talking about their learning in maths.
- our pupils use key mathematical vocabulary taught within Maths, as well as in a cross-curricular context.
- confident our pupils are when explaining their tasks, strategies used, as well as displaying a good level of understanding of mathematical concepts throughout.
- well, our pupils are able to reason.
- aware our pupils are of maths being used in everyday life and where they can use their knowledge and maths skills across the curriculum with confidence.
- well, our children are able to demonstrate secure understanding and fluency when recalling number facts and procedures as well as recognising patterns, relationships, and connections in maths.