Key Documentation and Resources:
Support and Guidance Tutorials
The Philosophy of Maths at Reigate Priory School:
At Reigate Priory, our teaching is underpinned by the belief that all children need a deep understanding of the mathematics they are learning. We aim to develop in each child a range of skills and concepts which allow them to use maths accurately and with confidence through the use of a concrete-pictorial-abstract approach. The planned provision of a rich variety of experiences encourages children to manipulate numbers in practical situations and in other subjects across the curriculum, developing awareness of Maths as a creative, meaningful part of the world around us. We believe in promoting a sustained and deep understanding of mathematics by employing a variety of strategies, with teaching for conceptual understanding at the core of everything we do. We ensure all pupils, regardless of ethnic background, gender or ability, have equal access to these concepts and the rich connections between them in order to reach their full potential and become lifelong learners.
Using the National Curriculum, it is our aim to develop pupils’ ability to:
- Become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics, including through varied and frequent practice with increasingly complex problems over time, so that pupils develop conceptual understanding and the ability to recall and apply knowledge rapidly and accurately.
- Reason mathematically by following a line of enquiry, conjecturing relationships and generalisations, and developing an argument, justification or proof using mathematical language.
- Solve problems by applying their mathematics to a variety of routine and non-routine problems with increasing sophistication, including breaking down problems into a series of simpler steps and persevering in seeking solutions.
Subject Leader - Miss F. Curtis (Maths Leader), Miss V. Smith (Mental Maths Leader)
Learning and Teaching:
- Maths is taught in class within each year group. Each class works at the same pace through their year group’s learning journey. All children in the class are working towards the same end of year and key stage expectations. Within class maths, children are supported in Keep Up focus groups and children are stretched within a concept through tasks which require a deeper level of thinking.
- Each year group also has a maths group for children who are working significantly below their age group’s learning journey. These classes are led by qualified, experienced teachers with TAs and Learning Mentors to provide additional support.
- Pupil Premium children are supported both in class and in small withdrawal groups, led by the Pupil Premium Leader and Pupil Premium HLTA, to ensure they are securing all small steps of their year group’s learning journeys and are able to reach age-related expectations.
- To support fluency in Maths, Children have a separate 30-minute Arithmetic Session each week. In Year 3 and 4, the focus for these sessions is on developing children’s knowledge, fluency and confidence with their times tables in line with the National Curriculum expectations. In Year 5 and 6, the focus of these sessions is on a wider range of arithmetic skills and understanding. All children in the school also have access to Times Tables Rockstars at home. This is an online platform designed to support children with their times tables.
All children take part in Third Space’s Fluent in Five activities four times a week. Fluent in Five provides a daily set of arithmetic practice designed to help children develop and maintain fluency in both written and mental calculations. The structure of Fluent in Five is designed to help children distinguish between written and mental calculations. It also helps pupils develop ‘number sense’ and fluency in the fundamentals of mathematics as well as to see the relationships between operations. In addition, it aims to increase a child’s ability to recall and apply knowledge rapidly and accurately. Each week, the class teacher will spend the first session modelling how to solve the Fluent in Five questions for that day using suitable mental or written methods. In the following lessons, children will complete the questions independently within five minutes. The class teacher will then go through the answers tackling misconceptions and modelling appropriate methods.
- The National Curriculum provides a detailed reference of expectations and activities for each year group. These guidelines are used to plan mid-term progression within each year group incorporating ICT and other resources, for example the outdoor classroom, wherever possible. White Rose Long-Term plans are used to plan the order and length of each block of content within every year group. Each block of content is taught once per year, giving children the opportunity to dig deeper into concepts. Medium-Term plans are formed through breaking down the curriculum into manageable ‘Small Steps’ which are taught separately. The ‘Small Steps’ approach helps children understand concepts better and avoids too many concepts being covered at once, which could lead to cognitive overload.
- Each Year group uses the National Curriculum and current assessment methods to inform their planning with an emphasis on providing regular opportunities for children to apply their mathematical knowledge. Children are given real-life situations in using and applying Maths through a wide variety of problem solving and investigation activities, linking into the wider curriculum whenever it is possible and appropriate. Every class follows the White Rose scheme of learning which is based on the National Curriculum. This outlines when mathematical knowledge, in unit blocks of work, will be taught and revisited. This is the basis for our well-sequenced and progressive curriculum. The Ready to Progress Criteria document is also referred to when planning each unit to ensure enough time is spent on key small steps.
The Medium-Term plans:
- Have number at their heart. A large proportion of time is spent reinforcing number to build competency
- Ensure teachers stay in the required key stage and support the ideal of depth before breadth
- Ensure students have the opportunity to stay together as they work through the schemes as a whole group
- Provide plenty of opportunities to build reasoning and problem solving elements into the curriculum.
- Ensure children have the opportunity to build competency when introduced to a new concept through the concrete-pictorial-abstract approach.
The Short-Term plans:
- Our weekly planning is based on the White Rose Maths small step sequences and planning documents. Lessons may be personalised to address the individual needs and requirements for a class but coverage is maintained. Small steps are planned to enable children to build on their prior knowledge and they only progress onto a new small step when a concept is fully secured.
- Lessons use a Concrete, Pictorial, Abstract (CPA) approach to guide children through their understanding of mathematical processes. This CPA approach provides children with hands-on learning when discovering new mathematical topics, and allows them to have clear models and images to aid their understanding. They are taught to explain their choice of methods and develop their mathematical reasoning skills. We encourage resilience, adaptability and acceptance that struggle is often a necessary step in learning. Our curriculum allows children to better make sense of the world around them relating the pattern between mathematics and everyday life.
- Year groups evaluate the success of their planning during weekly meetings. A maths team meet regularly to share good practice and address areas for development. There is a member of the maths team in each year group who will disseminate information and support their colleagues.
- Throughout the entire curriculum, opportunities exist to extend and promote Maths. Pupils are encouraged to explore the link between Maths, all other subjects and the world around them, by regular cross-curricular problem solving opportunities. More specifically, the cross-curricular nature of Maths is explored in Science, Computing, DT and Geography, where opportunities arise.
- Assessment for Learning is used on a daily basis in all classes. During lesson inputs, teachers will use AFL to identify children who need support with the small step in order to master it. These children will be in a Keep Up Group for the lesson working with the teacher. AFL is also used to inform starter activities to ensure areas which children find challenging are revisited.
- Assessment of mathematics follows the school assessment policy.
Teachers evaluate lessons on a weekly basis. This information is used during planning for the following week. Individual teachers are expected to identify how well individuals are working and the progress they are making each term. Additional support is given to pupils in every lesson who are not making sufficient progress in the form of personal intervention plans and guided teaching interventions. Children identified as GDS in mathematics by teachers provided with tasks which allow them to dive deeper into a concept rather than moving onto new learning. Pupils’ progress is tracked through school by teachers, the Maths Leader, Assistant Heads and the Assessment Leader.
- At the end of each term, teachers record pupils’ attainment on Target Tracker. This data is analysed by members of the senior leadership team and the Maths leader. Assistant Heads then hold pupil progress meetings with each teacher. The purpose of this meeting is to address and analyse individual pupil progress, whole group progress, target setting, intervention strategies used and next steps.
- At a two-week distance after a unit of learning, children complete White Rose end of unit assessments. These are used to inform planning, re-cap certain areas of learning and form appropriate pre-teach groups.
- In addition, specific groups e.g. SEND, Pupil Premium, EAL and MABLE are tracked and interventions, such as the precisely focused Reigate Priory Premium 1-1 tuition, are introduced and/ or evaluated where necessary. In Years 3, 4 and 5, NFER assessment papers are used to help inform end of year teacher assessments. Nfer assessments are also used in September in Year 3 to provide formative assessment information and mock SATs papers are used in Year 6 in September and January to help form intervention groups.
- The Maths team conduct:
- Planned book sampling with the focus determined by SDP, year group or whole-school needs.
- Maths Planning sampling.
- Regular Learning Walks
- Interviews with children to discuss their learning.
- Regular feedback from the above monitoring to the whole staff.
- Year 6 children are formally assessed using the national SAT examinations. Year 4 are formally assessed on their times tables knowledge using the national Multiplication Tables Check (MTC).
- The Maths Leader and Year 6 Assistant Head provide the Governor’s Curriculum Sub-Committee with a detailed analysis of the SAT results including comparisons with results from previous years. The Maths Leader also reports to Governors twice a year and contributes to the school SEF termly.
- Analysis of the target tracker data, MTC and SAT results informs the Maths Leader of areas to consider for whole school development.
- There is an appreciation of the importance of resources within the school and the Maths budget allows for teachers and staff to purchase new resources when required. As a result, there is a wide range of resources to support the teaching and learning of Maths in a concrete-pictorial-abstract method. Classes have a range of basic resources, with more specialised equipment being kept in the allocated areas within each year group. Particular emphasis is placed on the continuity of resources from KS1 to KS2 to support pupils’ transition from infant to junior school. Teachers provide suitable resources to support pupils’ learning including a variety of concrete tools, visual aids, computer software such as Time Table Rockstars, online games and the outdoor classroom.
- All teachers are given access to Maths training through external courses where appropriate, lesson studies, book sampling feedback and CPD during staff meetings from the maths team.