At St Botolph’s, we are committed to following the mastery approach to teaching mathematics.
Mastering maths means pupils acquiring a deep, long-term, secure and adaptable understanding of the subject. Achieving mastery means acquiring a solid enough understanding of the maths that’s been taught to enable pupils to move on to more advanced material.
Instead of learning mathematical procedures by rote, we want pupils to build a deep conceptual understanding of concepts which will enable them to apply their learning in different situations.
The curriculum has been developed to ensure that every child can achieve excellence in mathematics, providing children with a deep understanding of the subject through concrete, pictorial and abstract approaches to ensure pupils fully understand what they are learning and why.
A mastery curriculum is cumulative - each school year begins with a focus on the concepts and skills that have the most connections, which are then applied and connected throughout the school year to consolidate learning. This gives pupils the opportunity to ‘master maths’; by using previous learning throughout the school year, they are able to develop mathematical fluency and conceptual understanding.
The key features of our approach results in all staff having high expectations for every child; ensuring number-sense and place value are taught first to give solid foundations to build upon; a research-based curriculum where objects and pictures are always before numbers and letters and problem solving is central, so children can calculate with confidence, understanding why it works!
Aside from the maths lessons, Maths Meetings take place where children sing, chant, play games and undertake activities that pre-teach mathematical concepts as well as embedding newly learnt skills and practicing ones that require quick fire responses. This ensures children are able to respond quickly to mental arithmetic style questions as well as being able to have this knowledge at their finger tips in order to solve deeper questions and sophisticated problems.
We firmly believe that every child has the ability to achieve excellence in mathematics – there is no ‘maths gene’, if you practise and apply yourself, you can achieve.