We believe that mathematics is more than just learning about calculations. We aim to develop a sense of number and reasoning that allows children to use their maths knowledge in real-world situations. With the skills learned and developed through school, our children are able to question the world around them and identify patterns and suggest reasons for them. St Patrick's children are lifelong mathematicians.
We follow the mastery approach and use the curriculum structure provided by White Rose Maths. Concepts are developed gradually, using small steps to ensure continued progress and secure learning. Both fluency and reasoning are woven through lessons in order for children to practice then apply their learning.
We understand that the art to teaching and learning maths is to do so on secure foundations. These begin at home and nursery and we continue to develop them throughout Reception and KS1. Our infant classes support the learning of these essential foundations through the Mastering Number Programme. The programme works in a similar way to phonics for literacy - a highly structured apporach to over teaching aspects of mathematical understanding such as subitising, counting, comparing and accurate use of vocabulary.
Fluency involves children becoming so familiar and skilled with mathematical knowledge that it is almost second nature. Through carefully crafted lessons which revisit prior learning and build on this knowledge, children repeatedly practice procedures and apply knowledge in a range of contexts.
Reasoning revolves around the idea that once knowledge is secure, it can be manipulated and reapplied to variety of scenarios. Whilst all children access problems which require a level of reasoning, children are often challenged with deeper explanations or by proving their ideas.
Teaching and Learning
Whilst teaching and learning will naturally vary by year group and by the area of mathematics being taught, there are several aspects which all lessons share. These include:
Adaptive teaching - extending the more able through questioning and supporting those who need it through adult support or use of additional resources and manipulatives.
Discussion led learning.
AfL strategies, such as hinge questions or mini quizzes deployed to identify misconceptions.
Independent practice where children have the opportunity to apply new learning to fluency and reasoning based questions and tasks.
Guided practice where teachers assess understanding.
Accurate mathematical vocabulary modelled and used by all members of the class.
We believe that interventions should be carefully targeted to support those who are at risk of falling behind their peers or not achieving to their full potential. As such, our interventions for maths are time limited and highly structured and their impact is assessed on an individual basis. Where appropriate, teachers may assess misconceptions or needs for a small group who may then be supported by an adult to address these before moving on.
Supporting your child at home
As a school, we strongly believe that children's education is most effective when schools and families work together. Homework is set weekly and will always include an mathematical element, usually revisiting prior learning or practising essential knowledge, for example times tables ro number bonds. All children are provided with logins for NumBots and Times Table Rockstars and they are encouraged to regularly use these tools to improve their confidence and fluency. In addition, we have a calculation policy that is followed in school, which sets out the methods and procedures for the 4 operations as they develop throughout school.
Useful web links
Times Table Rockstars: https://ttrockstars.com/
Hit the Button: https://www.topmarks.co.uk/maths-games/hit-the-button