Our Mathematics teaching and learning at Upton School follows the aims and objectives of the National Curriculum. Within our Maths lessons it is our intent to foster the next generation of mathematicians who have the ability to reason mathematically and be prepared for everyday life and employment. We see maths as the base from which education can further develop understanding in science, technology, engineering and the essentials of financial literacy. Our aim is to also create an appreciation of the beauty and power of mathematics, along with a sense of enjoyment and curiosity about the subject through our curriculum design.
In order to achieve this, as a school to continue developing these aims deeper for all children, we work closely with ARK Mastery Maths. This mathematic programme is based upon three core principles: to provide learners with a deep conceptual understanding of mathematics principles, the ability to communicate in precise mathematical language, while becoming mathematical thinkers. We are confident that if a pupil understands the core principles, they will be able to remember more and so more maths, whichever context they encounter it.
For our members of staff:
To promote enjoyment and enthusiasm for mathematical learning through practical activity, exploration and discussion.
To ask relevant questions to promote mathematical discussion.
For our children:
To gain mastery and fluency with numbers and the number system.
To be able to talk confidently using subject specific vocabulary and engage in conversations about maths where they are able to explain their thinking.
To understand the importance of mathematics in everyday life and for their futures.
To develop the ability to solve problems through decision-making and reasoning in a range of contexts.
For our school:
To be an outward looking school, which supports and shares good practice with other schools, as well as keeping up to date with recent research and ideas, including involvement with Kent and Medway Maths Hub.
The Mathematics Mastery curriculum is cumulative, coherent and sequenced. This means that mathematical concepts that are taught earlier in the curriculum are revisited in the context of a new area of mathematics. Each school year begins with a focus on the knowledge, concepts and skills that have the most connections; such as, place value, addition and subtraction. These concepts are then applied and connected throughout the school year to consolidate learning. The Mathematics Mastery programme has provided curriculum resources alongside professional development. The curriculum is created and adapted to allow all children to have inclusion through the use of scaffolds and challenges. All teaching staff have now been fully trained in implementing the approach in their classrooms ensuring consistency throughout school.
As Mathematical language is a key principle of our approach, at the start of each new topic, key vocabulary (star words) is introduced, revisited throughout lessons and embedded as the topic progresses. Children are taught through the C-P-A (Concrete – Pictorial – Abstract) approach. This allows teachers to show clear modelling and reinforce the learning that is achieved by going back and forth between the representations, building pupils’ conceptual understanding. All teaching staff also use a six-part lesson structure which allows the lesson to be pacey whilst the children acquire a new skill, apply the skill and deepen the skill within the lesson.
Maths Meetings are used on a weekly basis, using the maths meeting guidance, to give children the opportunity to rehearse and readdress key concepts enabling the information to stay in their long-term memory. The topics selected must be included each term for both fluency and because some key learning will not be revisited until a later term and requires ongoing consolidation.
Feedback is given on children’s learning in line with our marking and feedback policy. Formative assessment within every lesson helps teachers to identify misconceptions, the children who are ready for a challenge or the children who need to access support through same-day interventions.
The Mathematics Mastery approach allows children to develop their mathematical fluency whilst being able to apply this knowledge through reasoning and problem-solving. Therefore, children are able to move between different contexts and representations of maths flexibly. They are also able to show a concept in multiple ways, use mathematical language to explain their ideas and can independently apply the concept to new problems in unfamiliar situations. Pupils need to be fluent, but that fluency must encompass understanding and be accompanied by reasoning and problem-solving.