Why we teach Maths
We believe that everyone can succeed at mathematics, and our Maths curriculum is designed to enable children to gain Maths confidence as they progress. We want all of our pupils to develop the sound grasp of number and mathematical concepts that will give them the confidence and skills to tackle the Maths of everyday life, but also to be able to apply their learning to solving practical and abstract problems.
But Maths is more than just a subject. Mathematical reasoning is a skill that leads to evidence-based thinking and the development of logic and rationality. We encourage children to use these ideas in other curriculum areas such as science and computing.
There are many individual benefits children gain from Maths, including academic and professional success. But Maths is also a key way to observe and understand the world, and offers a universal language for expressing ideas. Mathematics has developed the technology we see all around us, identified the causes and cures for diseases, and modelled the location of distant stars. We want all children to feel the pleasure and satisfaction from investigating and observing patterns and finding solutions to problems.
How we teach Maths
Our curriculum follows a spiral structure, in which children return to topics each year to revisit and build on their prior knowledge. We use the curriculum structure from White Rose Maths, which provides excellent progression as children move through the key stages.
Fundamental to our approach is the Concrete – Pictorial – Abstract (CPA) model, in which children use real objects and mathematical diagrams to explore and represent concepts, so that they can see how numbers work.
Pupils’ calculation skills are developed in lessons as outlined in our calculation policy, and are reinforced in our daily fluency sessions. From Class 3, they regularly practise their tables using Times Table Rockstars.
Our Curriculum Drivers in Maths
Engaging in mathematical learning allows pupils to think in a slightly different way to other subjects, so allows for intellectual development of a pure nature. Pupils experience the satisfaction of mastering a procedure and applying it to successfully find solutions to problems. The challenge inherent in solving tricky Maths questions enables pupils to develop resilience and self-awareness, which can be transferred to other areas of life.
As well as being an abstract discipline, we believe Maths is a practical subject that children need to master to succeed in the world outside the classroom. Within the curriculum, children have practical opportunities to use measures in real-life applications, learn to manage money, and draw conclusions from data.
Secure mathematical measuring and recording skills are essential when observing changes in other lessons, such as Science and Geography, where accurate measurements and clear evidence are required to support conclusions.
Children develop as mathematical thinkers, learning to problem solve and reason. They have opportunities to explore and develop their understanding of patterns and relationships in all areas of the Maths curriculum.
How our curriculum is structured
Our Maths curriculum is based on the principle of layered learning, which builds on and extends prior learning, reinforcing connections between different areas of mathematics. The White Rose scheme follows the National Curriculum for Maths and is carefully structured to allow to spaced practice of concepts, to reinforce learning.
In Early Years, children develop a deep understanding of number. They explore and develop an enthusiasm for mathematics through practical activities in their indoor and outdoor learning environments. They learn to count confidently, develop a deep understanding of the numbers to 10, the relationships between them and patterns within those numbers. Children are given a variety of different opportunities to build and apply this understanding and to solve problems in real-life contexts through using manipulatives, including mathematical equipment such as Numicon and counters as well as natural resources.
Key Stage 1
In Key Stage 1, children develop confidence and fluency with whole numbers, counting and place value. They are taught how to represent and use numbers in a variety of ways. Children work with both numbers and words and use the four operations - addition, subtraction, division and multiplication. They will continue to use and develop their understanding of different manipulatives to help develop their mathematical understanding.
Key Stage 2
In Key Stage 2, children move on to more formal methods of calculation, including using fractions and decimals. As in earlier years, they continue to use practical resources and diagrams to model concepts. Children are given regular opportunities to rehearse their fluency and reasoning, while continuing to develop their ability to solve increasingly sophisticated mathematical problems.
Additional opportunities are provided for all children at Boughton Monchelsea to continue their Maths learning at home. They are encouraged to use the Times Table Rockstars and Numbots apps and are awarded certificates for showing determination with their mathematical learning. They can also use the 1 Minute Maths app provided by White Rose.