Mathematics Curriculum Policy
All pupils should become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics, including through varied and frequent practice, so that pupils develop conceptual understanding and are able to recall and apply their knowledge rapidly and accurately to problems. (National Curriculum, 2014) At the centre of Springwell’s approach to mathematics is the belief that all pupils have the potential to succeed. They should have access to the same curriculum content and, rather than being extended with new learning, they should deepen their thinking further by tackling challenging and varied problems through reasoning. Similarly, with calculation strategies, pupils must not simply rote learn procedures but demonstrate their understanding of those mathematical concepts through the use of concrete materials, pictorial representations and in the abstract form. The procedure of the concrete-pictorial-abstract (CPA) approach is central to mathematics teaching at Springwell School. The principle of the CPA approach is that for all pupils to have a true understanding of a mathematical concept, they need to master all three phases. The reinforcement of skills and concepts is achieved by going back and forth between these representations. Pupils who demonstrate they have grasped concepts rapidly should be challenged by transferring and applying their mathematical understanding in different contexts rather than accelerating through new content. Pupils who require more time to develop their fluency should spend time consolidating their understanding, including additional practice, before moving on. At Springwell, teachers focus on the development of deep structural knowledge connected to previous learning. Making connections in mathematics deepens knowledge of concepts and procedures, ensuring what is learnt is sustained over time, and cuts down the time required to assimilate and master later concepts and techniques. We do not follow a scheme of learning; instead we utilise the best resources available including NCETM resources, NRICH and White Rose Mathematics.
At Springwell, our overarching aim is that all pupils will reach a minimum of age related expectations, or make at least expected progress from individual starting points. Our pupils will learn to:
• Develop the appropriate mathematical language associated with number, shape and position;
• Use and apply mathematics in practical tasks, in real life situations and in acquiring further knowledge, skills and understanding in the subject itself;
• Understand and use the four operations of number in relevant contexts;
• Understand relationships between numbers, learn basic number facts, and develop a range of computational methods;
• Understand place value in our counting system and understand how it can be extended into numbers below zero;
• Collect, interpret and represent data in tabular, graphical and diagrammatic form;
• Develop mental methods of calculation;
• Recognise, describe and represent shapes and patterns in terms of their properties, location and movement;
• Measure quantities including length, area, volume/ capacity, angle, temperature, time and mass;
• By the time children reach Year 6 they will be introduced to ratio/ proportion and language of algebra as a means for solving a variety of problems;
• Be able to use Bar Modelling efficiently and effectively to help solve complex problems.
Statutory requirements for the teaching and learning of Mathematics are laid out in the National Curriculum Document (2014).
Teaching and Learning:
Mathematics is taught daily in Early Years and for one hour per day (5 hours per week) in Key Stage 1 and 2 to develop pupils’ skills and knowledge. The teaching of mathematics at Springwell School provides pupils with opportunities for group work, paired work, whole class teaching and individual work. During mathematics lessons pupils engage in; development of mental strategies, written methods, practical work, investigation work and problem solving and reasoning.
Approaches to Mathematics Teaching:
Development of knowledge and skills (calculation);
• Focus on the development of mastery of the four operations;
• An emphasis on mental and written calculation and place value;
• Focus on developing secure knowledge of times tables up to 12x tables by the end of Year 4.
Development of mental strategies;
• Focus on the use of a range of mental strategies, using written and oral approaches;
• Specified time is dedicated to mental maths and in addition, practise of mental strategies is carried out in discrete activities;
• The teaching of mental strategies is integral to all mathematics lessons.
Problem solving and investigations;
• Development of a range of mental and written strategies to solve problems and to know the appropriate strategy to apply in different situations;
• Emphasis on developing the appropriate mathematical language in problem solving and the ability to relate problems to real life.
The procedure of CPA underpins all teaching and learning in mathematics at Springwell and carries across the three areas outlined above.
Cross Curricular Links:
Teachers will seek to take advantage of opportunities to make cross-curricular links through thorough, well thought out planning. Plans will incorporate time for pupils to practise and apply the skills, knowledge and understanding acquired through mathematics lessons to other curriculum areas.
We aim to ensure that all pupils progress and achieve highly in relation to prior attainment and personal targets. Teachers identify pupils who are under-achieving and take the following steps in response to their individual needs. In class, teachers will target specific gaps in pupils’ knowledge through differentiated teaching and TA support. Where needed intervention groups are used to raise the progress and attainment of targeted pupils.
To develop learning, pupils will be continuously assessed using a variety of strategies including: observation, questioning and marking in accordance with our school marking and feedback policy. Assessments are recorded onto pupil trackers in order to track the progress of pupils. This data in used to inform future planning, and to identify children for intervention and support. Each pupil will have progress and targets checked regularly.
We judge the impact of our mathematical teaching by:
• End of year assessments;
• Termly progress tests;
• Book and planning scrutiny;
• Lesson evaluations of the teaching of mathematics;
• Learning walks and pupil interviews.
Marking in mathematics follows the guidance set out in the marking and feedback policy.
Role of the Coordinator:
The co-ordinator is responsible for the strategic development of mathematics in order to improve achievement and the standards of teaching and learning. The subject leader for mathematics will monitor this curriculum area through, monitoring pupils’ books, talking to pupils and observing classroom practice through learning walks. In addition, the work of the subject leader involves supporting colleagues in the teaching of mathematics and informing teachers about current developments in the subject.
All pupils have equal access to the curriculum. This is monitored through lesson observations, book scrutiny and analysis of pupil performance throughout the school to ensure there is no disparity between groups.
The Governing Body:
Governors have the overall responsibility for agreeing this policy. Through the Curriculum Committee and full Governing Body they are responsible for monitoring the implementation of the mathematics policy including attainment of pupils and visits to school to monitor lessons, interview pupils and staff.