At St. George’s CE Primary School, we have adopted a mastery approach to teaching and learning in mathematics. At the centre of this approach is the belief that all pupils have the potential to succeed and become confident mathematicians. All children should have access to the same curriculum content and, rather than being extended with new content from other year groups, they should deepen their conceptual understanding of topics within their year group by reasoning and problem solving. Mastery is not just being able to memorise key facts and answer test questions quickly; instead, mastery involves knowing how and why the mathematics works and to have a conceptual understanding of the processes and fundamentals. It means being able to use mathematics knowledge in new and unfamiliar situations.
We aim to:
Develop a fascination and excitement within Maths lessons that fosters an inquisitive mindset and gives learners the opportunity to explore, hypothesise and review.
Support all members of our school community to develop a positive mindset and a ‘can do’ approach to learning about Maths. We understand that someone’s mindset can have a large bearing on their learning and that a growth mindset to Maths will facilitate good learning.
Help all students understand that making mistakes is a key part of any learning journey and that in making mistakes we can grow and learn further.
Ensure all mathematical vocabulary is used accurately, precisely and as early as possible within a learner’s mathematical journey to help develop clear conceptual understanding.
Ensure all learners are confident in using manipulatives and pictorial representations to expose the maths within a problem. To also ensure that children are able to choose to use these independently to support their understanding.
Make links and connections between the different concepts in Maths to help learners develop a more wholistic understanding of Maths.
Help learners to articulate their reasoning to be able to fully explain their methodology while at all times valuing everyone’s contributions and seeing different methods to solve the same problem.
Develop a more strategic approach to Maths that involves prioritising arithmetical proficiency over procedural methods.
Broaden children’s knowledge and understanding of how mathematics is used in the wider world by making rich and varied real life connections.
What maths lessons look like
As a maths mastery school we unsure that our maths lessons contain the 5 Big Ideas for mastery teaching. We use Power Maths resources to ensure our lessons include these elements. The children receive input from their teacher to match their needs. Prior learning and unit assessments are used to inform planning and teaching. Children are in mixed-ability groupings and the seating changes on a regular basis depending on the children’s needs and content of the lesson. We follow a lesson design of teacher input, fluency activity, then application through a greater-depth problem (problem solving) and/or a Challenge problem. They may work on these activities with the class teacher or independently, whilst the teacher and support staff deliver specific interventions to children who need it during the lessons. Lessons are designed on the principle of ‘concrete, pictorial to abstract’ and, where applicable, a range of manipulatives are used across the school to support children to secure key concepts, and to become fluent in methods of calculation.
Tracking attainment and progress
At the end of each maths unit, the children will complete the end of unit assessment. This then allows teachers to know which children are not working at the expected level and working at a greater depth. At the end of each term, children complete the Progress in understanding Maths assessments (PUMA tests). The data from these tests are collected by the SLT (maths coordinator) and children who have not yet made the expected progress, or children who are working behind the expectations for their year group, are identified. Pupil progress meetings are then held to review the successes of the term and to identify next steps for the vulnerable children identified. The information from these meetings is used to plan support timetables and further CPD for staff. The data analysis is supported by lesson observations, planning and book scrutinies and small-step progression monitoring, which are carried out termly.
Click on the links below for the progression of knowledge and skills in each mathematical area