Maths at St. Joseph's - Intent, Implementation and Impact
The curriculum is broken down into small manageable steps in order to ensure that each lesson has a clear focus and helps children understand concepts by following a carefully planned sequence of lessons. This avoids the cognitive overload that can occur when too many concepts are covered at once and ensures that each lesson contributes to the long-term goal. Within each lesson, children have the opportunity to acquire, practice, apply and deepen their knowledge and skills as appropriate. Pupils who understand concepts quickly are challenged by being offered rich and sophisticated problems to deepen their understanding. Concepts are revisited over time so that children can reinforce them and embed them into their long-term memory.
When introduced to a new concept, children have the opportunity to follow the concrete – pictorial - abstract approach. Concrete objects and manipulatives help them understand what they are doing. Alongside these, children use pictorial representations that can be used to help reason and solve problems. Concrete and pictorial representations then help support children’s understanding of abstract methods. During maths lessons, children will also have the opportunity to develop their reasoning skills, orally and written. When reasoning, children are encouraged to support their reasoning with mathematical proof.
All children are included in whole class lessons and teachers provide scaffolding and relevant support as necessary. Children who do not make expected progress are identified and intervention programs are put in place to support these children. This includes same-day intervention that enables children to access the learning planned for the following lesson. Teachers use assessment for learning methods to ensure that the work set for children is matched to ability.
Weekly maths homework is set using an online platform called IXL. Homework set is an opportunity to practice concepts taught in class each week. Alongside weekly homework, children are encouraged to learn number bonds and times tables on a regular basis.
As we firmly believe that maths is an essential everyday life skill that they rely on in many areas of life, we want to ensure that our children understand the relevance and importance of what they are learning in relation to real world concepts. We aim for our children to be fluent in mathematics with a sound conceptual understanding and the ability to recall and apply knowledge rapidly and accurately. Our children should have the skills to solve problems by applying their mathematics to a variety of situations with increasing sophistication, including in unfamiliar contexts and to model real-life scenarios. Children will be able to reason mathematically by following a line of enquiry and develop and present a justification, argument or proof using mathematical language. Our children demonstrate a positive view of maths due to learning in an environment where maths is promoted as being an exciting and enjoyable subject in which they can investigate and ask questions; they know that it is OK to be ‘wrong’ and that this can strengthen their learning because the journey to finding an answer is most important. Children are confident to ‘have a go’ and choose the equipment they need to help them to learn along with the strategies they think are best suited to each problem.
Assessment takes place at three connected levels: short-term, medium-term and long-term. These assessments are used to inform teaching in a continuous cycle of planning, teaching and assessment. Teachers will assess children’s understanding, achievement and progress in mathematics using daily assessments, these are based on observations, questioning, quizzes and the marking and evaluation of work.
At the end of Key stage 2, it is our aim that our children reach or exceed age related expectations in mathematics, in line with national outcomes.