At St. Mary’s, we take a mastery approach to mathematics. We use the White Rose maths scheme, which provides a clear and consistent approach to maths across the whole school. The goal of our mathematics teaching is to develop mathematically fluent, confident and proficient young people.
We work on building mathematical fluency and reasoning skills and this is developed across the school in a clear and consistent progression for all year groups.
Each term, students focus on key areas of mathematics, with opportunities to revisit and consolidate learning timetabled across the year. Each class, in all age groups, begins the year looking in depth at Place Value, and progression is clearly mapped out, in detail, across the key stages.
Maths lessons at St. Mary’s involve students employing resources, both concrete and pictorial, to explore and develop their understanding of the key concepts of early and primary mathematics. There is a consistent focus on reasoning and applying knowledge, which they have and are gaining, to problems and challenges in a real-world and familiar context.
At St. Mary’s, we also place a strong value on the importance of mental calculations and arithmetic. A range of strategies are taught and practised in each year group, with children learning and being encouraged to select the best strategy for each calculation they are faced with. Arithmetic is worked on daily, as part of the White Rose scheme, in order to keep previous learning fresh in the children’s minds, as well as providing opportunities for them to employ and apply what they are currently learning in class.
Care is taken, during lessons and in home learning tasks, to introduce the correct mathematical vocabulary to students. Teachers also model and insist on its correct usage when discussing work in lessons or recording activities in maths books.
Our teachers provide their students with regular opportunities to challenge themselves and deepen their mathematical thinking. This enables confident learners to expand on their mastery of concepts whilst also exposing those less confident members of the class to the ways in which their learning can be applied, and its intrinsic value. As well as this, any children struggling to access the curriculum for their year group are supported in their mathematical learning, in order for them to be able to operate, as much as possible, within the concepts that the rest of their peers are learning.
Our children are able to approach mathematical problems with confidence and armed with a range of knowledge and strategies to use in their solving. They can talk in detail, using the correct mathematical terms and vocabulary, about what they have done, the method they have chosen and why they have done it the way that they have. St. Mary’s students are able to understand how mathematical areas are connected and related and can use this knowledge to approach and solve a broad range of age-appropriate problems. Above all, our students recognise the value of being numerically-literate and mathematically-fluent.
All children in the school, from Year 1 upwards, have a login for the EdShed website. As part of this, the MathShed component provides a range of maths activities and tasks for the students to do at home. Regular use of the site enables children to hone and consolidate their mathematical knowledge. The site also provides opportunities to practice division and multiplication facts, in preparation for the end of Year 4 Multiplication (and division) Tables Check, and beyond.
At St. Mary’s, we take part in maths week each year. Our aim is to make maths enjoyable and more accessible for our students, especially those who are not as confident as they would like to be. As such, we focus on maths games and puzzles to really give the message that maths is fun!
We compete annually in the North Kensington maths contest, coming third most recently. This is a great opportunity for a hand-picked, crack squad of St. Mary’s children to prove their mathematical prowess against other local schools.
If you are thinking of supporting your child at home with their maths, these links may prove helpful: