At Fir Bank, we believe all children can achieve in maths and are committed to providing a high-quality education that excites, engages and challenges all of our children. Our maths teaching is underpinned by the belief that all children need a deep understanding of the mathematics they are learning. This is what we mean by Mastery. Our mastery curriculum allows our children to become fluent in the fundamentals of maths, developing their conceptual understanding and the ability to recall and apply knowledge rapidly and accurately. Children will then be able to reason mathematically by justifying, making links to known facts, or providing proof. Understanding of concepts will be challenged by applying their mathematical knowledge through problem solving. We want our children to become independent problem solvers who are always ready to take risks in their learning and challenge themselves on a daily basis. Mathematics is a tool for life, and our mastery approach provides all children with full access to the curriculum, enabling them to develop independence, confidence and resilience so they are well equipped to apply their learning to the wider world.
Maths at Fir Bank is taught in blocks throughout the year, so that children can achieve depth in their learning. Teachers use White Rose Schemes of work as a guide to support teachers with their planning and assessment and the calculation policy is used within school to ensure a consistent approach to teaching the four operations. Children are taught through clear modelling and have the opportunity to develop their knowledge and understanding of mathematical concepts throughout each lesson. The children consolidate the skills they are learning, whilst developing their reasoning skills, and are provided with further problem solving opportunities in which they are required to justify and explain their learning. Children who have shown their understanding at a deep level within the unit, will have opportunities to apply these skills in a greater depth activity.
The mastery approach incorporates using objects, pictures, words and numbers to help children explore and demonstrate mathematical ideas, enrich their learning experience and deepen understanding at all levels. The children’s’ understanding is extended through relating the ‘concrete’ stage to the ‘pictorial’ step. Through using pictures and visual representations, they develop a deep understanding of number and mathematical concepts. Relating this to numbers and mathematical operations involves the ‘abstract’ stage in which the concrete (practical resources) along with the pictorial representations relates to the numbers we see in calculations. Children with additional needs are included in whole class lessons and teachers provide scaffolding and relevant support as necessary. For those children who are working outside of the year group curriculum, individual learning activities are provided to ensure their progress. A love of maths is encouraged throughout school via links with others subjects, applying an ever growing range of skills with growing independence.
As a result of our Maths teaching at Fir Bank you will see:
- Confident, enthusiastic, resilient children who can talk about Maths and believe they can achieve
- Engaged children who are challenged
- Links made between mathematical topics and new learning
- A secure, long-term, deep understanding of maths which can be applied in different contexts
- Quick recall of facts and procedures
- Children who can reason mathematically and solve problems by applying their mathematics
- Mathematical skills and concepts shown in multiple ways
- Correct mathematical language used to explain ideas