A high-quality mathematics education provides a foundation for understanding the world, the ability to reason mathematically and a sense of enjoyment and curiosity about the subject. Mathematics is a proficiency which involves confidence and competence with numbers and measures. It requires an understanding of the number system, a repertoire of computational skills and an ability to solve number problems in a variety of ways in which information is gathered by counting and measuring and is presented in graphs, diagrams, charts, and tables.
Mathematics gives children a way of coming to terms with their environment. Practical tasks and real-life problems can be approached from a mathematical point of view. Mathematics provides children with imaginative areas of exploration and study and gives them the materials upon which to exercise their mathematical skills. These skills are a necessary tool of everyday life. Mathematics should help children to develop an appreciation of, and enjoyment in, the subject itself, as well as a realisation of its role in other curriculum areas.
Our intent is to develop lively, enquiring minds encouraging pupils to become self-motivated, confident, and capable in order to solve problems that will become an integral part of their future. Therefore, underpinning our curriculum design, based on 'know more, do more, remember more', is the assertion that students need a solid understanding of core knowledge if they are going to progress, and be capable of accessing their next stage of learning.
In mathematics education at Concord Junior School, our intent is to sustain and develop in all children:
- Confidence – an understanding and enjoyment in mathematics alongside an independence of thought and action.
- Conceptual understanding- understanding and representing the interwoven relationships between mathematical ideas, patterns, and procedures.
- Fluency – an efficient recall of facts to support further learning.
- Methodical thinking – the ability to apply fluency and conceptual understanding to approach and solve a problem. This could also be the use micro-technology and other mathematical aids.
- Strategies- the ability to use mathematics effectively as a tool in a wide variety of situations. The ability to work systematically where the task requires a careful accurate approach, as well as the ability to show imagination, initiative, and flexibility when appropriate.
- Communicate- pupils can cooperate within a group. An appreciation of mathematics as a means of communication through which they can analyse information and ideas.
Teachers at Concord Junior School use the White Rose Maths Curriculum.
Teachers carefully plan lessons based on this scheme, using the Concrete, Pictorial, Abstract approach to encourage children to think mathematically, building in lots of opportunities for mathematical discussion, opportunities to revisit previous content and encouraging the use of manipulatives. Teachers plan opportunities for Oracy at regular intervals during maths lessons; children are encouraged to use talk frames when; explaining their thoughts on strategy, reasoning, or misconceptions.
Yearly overviews outline the concepts over the year.
Weekly overviews - The concepts are broken down and the end goals for units of work are outlined here. Teachers use the overviews to ensure they know how to support pupils to achieve the end goals. These provide more detail for Concord Staff. This document also signposts teachers to professional development materials.
Small steps provide teachers with lesson objectives. These small steps break the concept down into learning objectives. These are steps toward achieving the end goals. Each small step has an accompanying home learning video. These can also be used to support students who are absent or who need to catch up content from earlier blocks or years.
At Concord Junior School we have mapped and outlined crucial factual knowledge for pupils based on The National Strategies Primary - Teaching Children to Calculate Mentally document. This sets expectations for year groups and the crucial knowledge pupils require before they are ready to progress on to the next year’s curriculum.
As part of our work on manipulatives, we have introduced Braining Camp and Numicon to give children access to a consistent manipulative should they need it. Where pupils are not secure with concepts, teachers carefully craft activities and lessons to support these pupils. To extend pupils, teachers use a bank of resources from the NCETM Mastery Materials and Nrich.
Know More, Do More, Remember More Strategies
At Concord Junior School we use a range of strategies to help children to know more, do more and remember more. The strategies include:
- A revisit- spiral approach to learning
- Use of Small Steps
- Consistent approaches to manipulatives
- Daily fluency checks
- Times Table Rock Stars set weekly as homework
- Working walls to make links between prior learning as well as current learning
- Spotting patterns and making links across the curriculum
- Varied fluency