Curriculum Statement for Mathematics
At St Anne Line Catholic Infant School we recognise that mathematics is a fundamental part of thought and logic which is integral in understanding the world and ourselves. Mathematics builds mental reasoning skills and plays a crucial role in other school subjects such as science, computing and music. A high quality mathematics education provides the foundations for everyday life beyond school, such as in employment and being financially literate. With this in mind we promote mathematics in the hope of instilling an enjoyment in the subject, supporting learners to engage confidently and positively with mathematics.
The National Curriculum (2014) aims for Mathematics is to ensure that all pupils:
- become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics, including through varied and frequent practice with increasingly complex problems over time, so that pupils develop conceptual understanding and the ability to recall and apply knowledge rapidly and accurately.
- reason mathematically by following a line of enquiry, conjecturing relationships and generalisations, and developing an argument, justification or proof using mathematical language
- can solve problems by applying their mathematics to a variety of routine and non-routine problems with increasing sophistication, including breaking down problems into a series of simpler steps and persevering in seeking solutions.’
We aim for our learners to have a depth of understanding so that they are confident and curious with their mathematics, enjoying this powerful and creative subject.
The teaching approach taken for Mathematics at St Anne Line aims to reduce maths anxiety by making lessons accessible and inclusive for all learners by breaking concepts and objectives into small steps. Objectives are not just ‘received’ passively but are worked on by learners to fully understand, explore and apply their new knowledge. Teaching guides learners through the Concrete, Pictorial, Abstract processes where manipulatives, models, and stem sentences are used to expose concepts and connections in order to scaffold and deepen learning.
Teachers plan lessons using guidance from the National Centre for Excellence in the Teaching of Mathematics (NCETM) but use a range of sources which are carefully selected to meet the needs of the learners at that stage of learning. The 5 big ideas of mastery teaching are shown in the diagram to the left. Teachers plan individual and sequences of lessons to include these important elements.
In mathematics lessons you can expect to see:
- Good Pace
- The large majority of pupils will progress through the curriculum content at the same pace, assessment for learning strategies inform this.
- The questioning and scaffolding individual learners receive in class will differ and pupils who grasp concepts rapidly are challenged through more demanding reasoning activities which deepen their knowledge further.
- Those learners needing adaptations will be identified quickly and scaffolds will be provided, for example manipulatives provided or additional modeling by an adult.
- Where groups or individuals need more targeted support an intervention will take place at another time in the day.
- Teachers will demonstrate, model and expose the maths concept to learners through the use of manipulatives and models. Learners will practise using these until they can be independent, using them to support their learning activities.
- Variation activities then further develop fluency and understanding in tandem.
- Retrieval will take place at the beginning of lessons in a “Fluent in 5” activity, where previous key knowledge is recalled from past units, weeks or terms.
- The NCETM Mastering Number Programme develops foundational maths knowledge and these sessions take place in the afternoon for 10-15 minutes 4x times per week in EYFS and KS1
- Reasoning and Problem Solving
- Opportunities are in all lessons for learners to develop reasoning skills supported by rehearsal, adult modeling, use of stem sentences.
- Problem solving activities are available for learners to work through at their own pace at varying stages of the lesson.
- Teachers will directly teach learners through ‘think alouds’ and modeling of skills involved in solving problems systematically and applying knowledge, this can be whole class, for groups or individuals.
- Open questions are used to prompt discussion, to encourage learners to notice connections and patterns and to encourage mathematical reasoning.
- Questioning is used to assess pupils regularly to identify those requiring support with the aim that all pupils make at least expected progress, with many excelling.
- Collaboration and Groupings
- Pupils will collaborate by taking part in whole class discussions, talk partners or group work.
- Groupings within lessons are flexible and learners will work in different groups depending on the lesson design.
We ensure that oracy is a prominent aspect of our mathematics curriculum and lessons. The National Curriculum 2014 Mathematics Programme of Study highlights the importance of spoken language in mathematics and states “the quality and variety of language that pupils hear and speak are key factors in developing their mathematical vocabulary and presenting a mathematical justification, argument or proof. They must be assisted in making their thinking clear to themselves as well as others, and teachers should ensure that pupils build secure foundations by using discussion to probe and remedy their misconceptions.”
Most learners will move through units of learning at broadly the same pace, as is the expectation of the National Curriculum 2014. Those who grasp concepts rapidly will be challenged through rich problem solving opportunities to increase depth of understanding rather than simply accelerating through new content. Any pupils who have gaps in their knowledge or are not sufficiently fluent with a concept will consolidate their understanding through additional practice before moving on.
Paper copies of any information regarding our curriculum statements can be requested from the school office free of charge.