At Holy Trinity we believe Mathematics is an essential life skill and therefore strive to ensure that all our pupils develop a secure understanding and fluency within the subject. For our children to grow into effective mathematicians, we value the links between mathematical and intellectual development. To do this, we place high emphasis on reasoning, problem solving and communication within our mathematics teaching. Finally, we feel it is important to nurture the children’s curiosity and enjoyment in the subject so they can have the confidence and self-belief to reach their full potential as mathematicians.
We aim to teach Mathematics using a mastery approach so all our pupils have equal opportunity to achieve within the subject. It is important to us that our children develop a secure and deep level understanding of mathematical concepts that is fully embedded; ready to be built on in future learning. We want the children to be mathematically fluent, able to quickly recall number facts and apply this knowledge with confidence and accuracy to different situations. It is key that the children’s fluency is developed alongside mathematical reasoning and problem solving so that they are able to make links with different areas of learning and build on existing knowledge. Mathematical vocabulary is encouraged in order that they can develop and share their understanding; reasoning and problem solving effectively independently or with others. Finally, we endeavour to nurture the children’s curiosity and enjoyment ensuring our children leave Holy Trinity with positive attitudes and feelings towards mathematics.
To build a broad understanding, we apply a mastery approach when teaching the National Curriculum Maths. White Rose is out scheme of work which is used to support teaching and learning from Reception to Year 6 ensuring clear progression in all mathematical concepts. In EYFS Maths is taught daily through class inputs or small group activities; there are also carefully planned learning experiences built into their play. In Key Stage (KS) 1 and 2 Maths is taught in daily in hour long lessons, utilising both the classroom and outdoor areas to ensure all children access and engage with their learning. Practical resources are used to scaffold learning and mathematical talk is actively encouraged throughout lessons.
1. Delivering a Mastery Curriculum
Mathematical concepts are taught in depth to ensure the learning is sufficiently mastered by all. Pupils who grasp concepts rapidly, will be challenged through use of rich and sophisticated problems and those who are not sufficiently fluent with earlier material will have opportunities to consolidate their understanding through additional practice, before moving on.
2. Developing a Secure Understanding Through CPA approach
To ensure all the children develop a secure understanding of maths, we base our teaching on a CPA model (concrete-pictorial-abstract). Children will first experience concepts by manipulating concrete objects before exploring a variety of visual representations. Once secure with these, they will start to use symbols to record and further develop their understanding. Because we want our children to be active participants in the learning process, we encourage them to choose for themselves from a wide range of resources to support their learning. It is expected that all classrooms are well-provided with practical resources to support the children’s mathematics.
3. Developing Fluency
Fluency is vital in today’s curriculum; it allows children to be able to use and build on their learning. For the children to be truly fluent they must recall information with speed and accuracy and apply it to different contexts; they must also recognise different representations of one concept.
4. Developing Problem Solving and Reasoning
To develop the children as mathematical thinkers they need to be able to reason and solve problems. Reasoning is recognising patterns, making connections, explaining, convincing others and thinking creatively. Problem Solving is the opportunity to apply their understanding and reasoning to solve problems across a range of contexts, develop strategies and show resilience when encountering problems. These elements are integral to all lessons, where staff challenge children to explain their thinking and encourage them to persevere and develop their resilience.
5. Mathematical Talk & Communication
So that the children can develop as mathematical communicators, we provide a range of opportunities to discuss and talk within a mathematics lesson. Mathematical language and talk will be modelled by the teacher and also used as a tool by the children to share their understanding and reasoning with others. Teachers encourage this through: whole class discussions, group or peer learning and 1 to 1 interaction with the teacher.
6. Curiosity and Enjoyment
Whole school maths events and outdoor learning are used to foster the children’s curiosity, applying maths concepts to real life situations and a range of exciting investigations that have been carefully planned to build on their secure understanding. We expect all children to be engaged actively within lessons using talk and a choice of resources to problem solve and reason. Our classrooms are environments in which we are positive about the process of problem solving and reasoning, valuing the process of getting stuck. We feel that the positive feeling of overcoming ‘stuckness’ is enjoyable for the children and key to developing motivation towards the subject.