Good mathematics is not about how many answers you know…It is how you behave when you don’t know. ~ Author unknown
At St Francis, we believe that Mathematics is a fundamental life skill, as well as a subject rich in creativity and logic. It is an essential part of a balanced curriculum and should be accessible and appropriately challenging for all learners. All pupils should become fluent in the fundamentals of Mathematics and should be able to apply their knowledge, understanding and reasoning skills to a variety of problems to help them in their daily lives. We want children to be able to develop rich and meaningful connections between different strands of Mathematics, as well as to see the significance of mathematical application in other subjects, such as Science, Computing and Design Technology and to appreciate the development of mathematical thinking over time. For all pupils, we aim to deliver high-quality Mathematics teaching which lays a strong foundation for children’s future financial literacy and employment, and inspires an appreciation of the beauty of Mathematics as a discipline.
At St Francis, we teach the Mathematics National Curriculum, supported by our calculation policies, KSVs (which lay out strand declarative and procedural progression) and White Rose Maths. All of which set a clear, coherent progression, that ensures knowledge and skills are built on year on year. The expectation is that the majority of children move through the content at the same pace, with the aim that they are confident with their yearly objectives and develop their ability to use the knowledge to reason and problem solve. Where necessary SEND children may require more personalised learning which will be guided by their EHCP, MSP or IEP. Children have daily Maths lessons and where necessary, in addition to this lesson, targeted and regular intervention, through the use of Number Stacks, which allows them to explore their misconceptions and close gaps in their learning.
At the start of each lesson, children begin with a Flashback (retrieval practice) of prior learning to ensure children know and remember more. At St Francis, we adopt a CPA (concrete - pictorial - abstract) approach with teachers carefully selecting representations of mathematics to expose mathematical structure. The intention is to support pupils in ‘seeing’ the mathematics, rather than using the representation as a tool to ‘do’ the mathematics, supporting them to achieve a deep understanding of mathematical structures and connections. Children in most lessons complete independent questions in the form of stickers. In addition, due to the interconnected nature of Mathematics, we also provide opportunity for the practical application of Maths, across the curriculum.
Alongside the daily lessons, we dedicate additional time to building fluency of key facts including through our Number Sense work and our 'Little and Often' approach. As we know that efficient, accurate recall of key number facts and procedures is essential for fluency, flexibility to move between different contexts and representations of mathematics, to recognise relationships and make connections, and to choose appropriate methods and strategies to solve problems.
At St Francis mathematical thinking is central to learning with a particular focus on precise language. This enables children to be more confident in communicating their ideas about patterns and relationships, connections, conjecturing, reasoning, and generalising. Every lesson uses stem sentences to develop children’s language and reasoning contributions.
Our Maths curriculum is of a high quality and ensures there is clear progression. In order to ensure this, we gather a variety of data and feedback to check whether learning has occurred. We use this triangulation to assess whole school impact.
The information gathered through these methods directly impacts the future planning of teaching and learning opportunities, ensuring that we are responsive to the needs of our learners. At the end of each year we expect the children to have achieved Age Related Expectations (ARE) for their year group. Some children will have progressed further and achieved greater depth (GD). Children who have gaps in their knowledge receive appropriate support and intervention.
- Pupil voice shows our children are happy learners who talk enthusiastically about their learning and are eager to further their progress in Maths.
- Our Maths books evidence work of a high standard of which children clearly take pride; the components of the teaching sequences demonstrate good coverage of fluency, reasoning and problem solving.
- We survey our staff to identify strengths and CPD needs.
- Formative assessments; through daily retrieval practice (Flashbacks), we can check for children’s retention of previously taught concepts.
- Low Stakes Quizzing and Fluent Recall: We use a range of low stakes testing throughout the teaching cycle to assess attainment and progress. From Year 2 to Year 6, children complete regular tests in Arithmetic and Times Tables.
- Foundation Stage; summative assessment provided against the Early Learning Goals.
- End-of-term summative assessments in Years 1 - 6; occur during three assessment windows yearly.
- Y1, 3, 4, 5 - Autumn, Spring and Summer assessments are from the NTS and past SATs papers are used in Year 2 and 6. These are standardised to ensure validity when considered with teacher judgements, books and an aggregation of the shorter weekly tests.
- Following on from assessments, pupil progress meetings take place to monitor children’s attainment and progress and to discuss next steps going forward.
Our Knowledge Organisers
These are taken home before the start of every new term. These contain the knowledge the children need to know. In school they are regularly quizzed on them and below are also some quizzes to do at home.
(Thanks to Sophie Bartlett @_MissieBee)
Year 6 just have one Knowledge Organiser of key facts for the year. However, they will greatly benefit from revising all the other KS2 ones.