The ultimate purpose of Maths is the pursuit of truth. The thinking skills inherent in the maths curriculum should inspire and enable learners to be innovative, creative, critical and analytical learners. Exploring the beauty of mathematics enables all learners to engage with the transcendent dimensions of life, freeing them to be pioneers, trailblazers and the inventors needed today and in the future. The real-world context comes first, and the theory comes second.
At the centre of the St Wilfrid's mastery approach to the teaching of mathematics is the belief that all pupils have the potential to succeed. Developing a 'Mathematical Mindset' in every child enables them to proactively self-regulate and take ownership of their learning through metacognition. They should have access to the same curriculum content and, rather than being extended with new learning, they should deepen their conceptual understanding by tackling varied and challenging problems. Similarly with calculation strategies, pupils must not simply rote learn procedures but demonstrate their understanding of these procedures through the use of concrete materials and pictorial representations to ensure fluency and depth of understanding.
The principle of the concrete-pictorial-abstract (CPA) approach is that for pupils to have a true understanding of a mathematical concept, they need to master all three phases. Reinforcement is achieved by going back and forth between these representations. Pupils who grasp concepts rapidly should be challenged through rich and sophisticated problems before any acceleration through new content. Those pupils who are not sufficiently fluent with earlier material should consolidate their understanding, including through additional practice, before moving on.
Please click on the policies and Maths information below to see how maths is taught at St Wilfrid's.
Developing a strong grounding in number so that all children develop the necessary building blocks to excel mathematically. Children should be able to count confidently, develop a deep understanding of the numbers to 10, the relationships between them and the patterns within those numbers. By providing frequent and varied opportunities to build and apply this understanding – such as using manipulatives, including small pebbles and tens frames for organising counting – children will develop a secure base of knowledge and vocabulary from which mastery of mathematics is built. In addition, the curriculum will include rich opportunities for children to develop their spatial reasoning skills across all areas of mathematics including shape, space and measures. Children will develop positive attitudes and interests in mathematics, look for patterns and relationships, spot connections, ‘have a go’, talk to adults and peers about what they notice and not be afraid to make mistakes.
Develop confidence and mental fluency with whole numbers, counting and place value. This should involve working with numerals, words and the four operations, including with practical resources [for example, concrete objects and measuring tools. Pupils should develop their ability to recognise, describe, draw, compare and sort different shapes and use the related vocabulary. They should also use a range of measures to describe and compare different quantities such as length, mass, capacity/volume, time and money. By the end of year 2, pupils should know the number bonds to 20 and be precise in using and understanding place value. An emphasis on practice at this early stage will aid fluency. Pupils should read and spell mathematical vocabulary, at a level consistent with their increasing word reading and spelling knowledge at key stage 1.
Become increasingly fluent with whole numbers and the four operations, including number facts and the concept of place value. They will develop efficient written and mental methods and perform calculations accurately with increasingly large whole numbers. Pupils should develop their ability to solve a range of problems, including with simple fractions and decimal place value. Pupils will have the opportunity draw with increasing accuracy and develop mathematical reasoning so they can analyse shapes and their properties, and confidently describe the relationships between them. It should ensure that they can use measuring instruments with accuracy and make connections between measure and number. By the end of year 4, pupils should have memorised their multiplication tables up to and including the 12 multiplication table and show precision and fluency in their work. Pupils should read and spell mathematical vocabulary correctly and confidently, using their growing word reading knowledge and their knowledge of spelling.
Extend their understanding of the number system and place value to include larger integers. This should develop the connections that pupils make between multiplication and division with fractions, decimals, percentages and ratio. Pupils should develop their ability to solve a wider range of problems, including increasingly complex properties of numbers and arithmetic, and problems demanding efficient written and mental methods of calculation. With this foundation in arithmetic, pupils are introduced to the language of algebra as a means for solving a variety of problems. Teaching in geometry and measures should consolidate and extend knowledge developed in number. Pupils will classify shapes with increasingly complex geometric properties and that they learn the vocabulary they need to describe them. By the end of year 6, pupils should be fluent in written methods for all four operations, including long multiplication and division, and in working with fractions, decimals and percentages. Pupils should read, spell and pronounce mathematical vocabulary correctly.