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Mathematics

At Lady Seaward’s Church of England Primary School, we will inspire excellence in maths through a consistent approach to planning and delivering mathematics teaching for mastery. The key ideas of this approach are described by the National Centre for Excellence in the Teaching of Mathematics:

 

  • Maths teaching for mastery rejects the idea that a large proportion of people ‘just can’t do maths’.
  • All pupils are encouraged by the belief that by working hard at maths they can succeed.
  •  Pupils are taught through whole-class interactive teaching, where the focus is on all pupils working together on the same lesson content at the same time. This ensures that all can master concepts before moving to the next part of the curriculum sequence, allowing no pupil to be left behind.
  • If a pupil fails to grasp a concept or procedure, this is identified quickly and early intervention ensures the pupil is ready to move forward with the whole class in the next lesson.
  • Lesson design identifies the new mathematics that is to be taught, the key points, the difficult points and a carefully sequenced journey through the learning. In a typical lesson the teacher leads back and forth interaction, including questioning, short tasks, explanation, demonstration, and discussion.
  • Procedural fluency and conceptual understanding are developed in tandem because each supports the development of the other.  It is recognised that practice is a vital part of learning, but the practice used is intelligent practice that both reinforces pupils’ procedural fluency and develops their conceptual understanding.
  • Significant time is spent developing deep knowledge of the key ideas that are needed to underpin future learning. The structure and connections within the mathematics are emphasised, so that pupils develop deep learning that can be sustained.
  • Key facts such as multiplication tables and addition facts within 10 are learnt to automaticity to avoid cognitive overload in the working memory and enable pupils to focus on new concepts.

 

Lady Seaward's as formed their own overarching principles which we feel ensures that the 'Mastery' approach is followed in respect of the teaching and learning of mathematics.

 

Principle One

Learning Objectives for each lesson will be carefully chosen and clearly communicated to pupils.

What this looks like

Learning objectives will be visible in pupils’ books and displayed in class during lessons and, at times, on the maths Learning Journey display.

Planning

First Federation Trust planning ‘non-negotiables’ are followed, using a Small Steps planning approach advocated by NCTEM. Objectives are chosen from The National Curriculum, and a range of documents are used to break these down into smaller steps (such as NCETM and White Rose planning tools). 

 

Principle Two

Lessons will build on prior learning and address misconceptions/gaps in understanding.

What this looks like

An elicitation task takes place at the start of a unit, to identify pupils’ areas for development.

Planning

Gap analysis from previous work and assessments is used, to inform next steps.

 

Principle Three

Lessons will develop fluency of number facts

What this looks like

As well as explicit, discrete teaching, there are regular opportunities to rehearse and revise facts, often at the start of a maths lesson, or for a short period of time at another stage of the day.

 

Principle Four

Activities for children to carry out will be carefully matched to their ability, including stretch and challenge as well as additional support as necessary.

What this looks like

Differentiated tasks in pupils’ books. Differentiation can involve a number of forms, including adjustment of tasks, choice of question, level of support etc.

Planning

Intelligent practice and varied fluency will be planned for all pupils at a level that is matched to their location on the learning journey.

 

Principle Five

Lessons will feature an opportunity for problem-solving.

What this looks like

Children will be challenged to solve problems in almost every lesson. Sometimes this will be evident in the work that is completed, or it may be present during whole-class teaching or a plenary session.

Planning

Lesson plans should include well-chosen questions that demand pupil to use reasoning to grapple with problems that are suitable for their ability.

 

Principle Six

Representations, modelling and manipulatives are used to develop pupils’ depth of understanding.

What this looks like

Pupils will always have the chance to develop their understanding through concrete, pictorial and abstract representations. These will be visible in children’s books and on materials used for teaching.

 

Planning

Lesson plans make use of successful models from resources such as NCETM, and opportunities for children to use relevant manipulatives are also planned in.

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