Our ambition at St Mary’s is that all pupils become confident and fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics, have the ability to reason mathematically and gain a deep conceptual understanding. We use a mastery approach in which all children are expected to work on the same lesson content at the same time, rather than expectations being set before a lesson.
Children who need more support are identified and given same day intervention that provides alternative explanations and approaches. Through high expectations and an inclusive approach to teaching mathematics we provide the learning experiences that ensure all children know that by working hard they can achieve.
We use Inspire Maths, a text book based programme, aimed to deepen understanding rather than accelerate teaching with no limits to learning. One of only two schemes of work approved by the DfE and NCETM, Inspire is a sustained and consistent scheme with a carefully designed spiral progression and an emphasis on a concrete-pictorial-abstract approach.
St Mary’s is also part of the NCETM ‘Teaching for Mastery’ programme and through our in school mastery specialist teacher we lead a maths hub workgroup of other schools in North East London. These workgroups meet regularly, prepare and share good practice, reflect on strategies of Teaching for Mastery and conduct model lessons to raise standards across the country.
Our ambition at St Mary’s is that all pupils become confident and fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics, have the ability to reason mathematically and gain a deep conceptual understanding. Through high expectations and an inclusive approach to teaching mathematics we provide the learning experiences that ensure all children know that by working hard they can achieve.
We use Inspire Maths, a text book based programme, aimed to deepen understanding rather than accelerate teaching with no limits to learning. Inspire is a sustained and consistent scheme with a carefully designed spiral progression and an emphasis on a concrete-pictorial-abstract approach.
We are committed to closing the attainment gap and ensuring that no child is left behind. Our expectation is that the large majority of pupils will progress ‘through the programmes of study at broadly the same pace.’ (Ofsted Handbook September 2015). All children are expected to work on the same lesson content at the same time, rather than expectations being set before a lesson, children who need more support are identified and given same day intervention that provides alternative explanations and approaches.
Our Maths Lessons
In a Maths lesson at St Mary’s you can expect to see…
- A narrow focus; with depth, variation and precise questioning and dialogue with pupils to assess conceptual and procedural knowledge
- Less direct whole class teaching and more of an emphasis on independent exploration and guided practice with a stop start approach to the lesson
- Collaborative work with a high value placed on mathematical discussion, children being encouraged to explore with others and peer support when needed
- Children working in mixed ability groups, progressing through text books and practice books designed to build speed and fluency. Text books are designed to deepen their understanding with careful procedural variations and conceptual questioning
- Learning being supported by concrete manipulatives to provide children with the tools to explore, develop and test mathematical concepts
- SEND children being supported with high expectation intervention provided by Special Needs Assistants (using the Breaking Barriers scheme of work)
- Teaching staff may work with small groups of children who require more support, both during the lesson and in targeted intervention sessions held later in the day
- Children’s work will be marked in lessons where possible with adult support to correct misconceptions and next steps given to deepen and extend learning. Children are also encouraged to take ownership of the marking process and to self-assess the next steps in their learning
Our More Able Children
- Procedural and conceptual variation is built in throughout the text books so children are challenged to demonstrate their thinking in different ways with every question they meet
- Rich and sophisticated problem-solving activities are prepared and dropped in during units for most able to demonstrate greater depth thinking skills
- Questioning, testing, proving and explaining are expected so it is no longer enough to just know it; more able children are challenged to demonstrate their depth of understanding
Our Maths Books
- High presentation expectations within a ‘journaling’ approach to recording, children will demonstrate the pictorial and abstract representations of a concept
- Clear evidence of progression and differentiation – Each child’s journey through a unit of work will be signposted by Let’s Learn – Let’s Practice – Let’s Challenge. Where children have received additional adult support or interventions this will also be clearly indicated. Please ask teaching staff and children to explain further and show you examples
- Children reflect on their learning outcomes and explain their understanding of the new concepts learnt, they comment on their work and adjust mistakes where appropriate
- Whole class learning and exploration is recorded in the class ‘Reasoning Book’ in which the children have opportunities to question, comment and reflect on their practical work
- Marking is done ‘in the moment’ with yellow being used for success and green denoting an error which children are expected to address immediately. Extra challenge is dropped in when children have a strong conceptual understanding and the mastery stamper is used to demarcate the question
- The children in EYFS are taught through the ‘Firm Foundations’ Numicon based scheme, a comprehensive and varied programme of mathematics activities that provides the early stages of a mastery curriculum
- Maths is delivered in a child-centred, creative and practical way with recording made both in workbooks and through child online learning journals
- Children are encouraged to explore number, pattern, shape and measure through play and directed activities to ensure they develop a deep understanding and application of the core concepts they will then build on in Key Stage One