Curriculum Leaders: Mrs Rachel Backhouse (KS2) and Miss Jade Grayson (KS1)
Intent: Enjoyment and engagement are at the heart of the ways we aim to teach Mathematics at Pilgrim Academy, both for pupils of all ages and for teachers and support staff. It is through making the skills relevant and appropriate to the children’s lives that it is increasingly viewed as both a core skill and a way of embedding strong links to other areas of learning. This could be evidenced within scientific recording and conclusions, historical timelines, geographical co-ordinates and many other examples of number use.
We also recognise that Mathematics is an interconnected subject in which pupils need to be able to move fluently between use of concrete resources, pictorial representations and abstract ideas and concepts. We aim to teach maths in a way that is engaging, meaningful and appropriate to the changing needs of our pupils and promoted a love of learning through a range of different enquiry and recording methods.
Our children’s journey begins in Early Years, where we start the process of developing key mathematical skills by adopting a highly kinaesthetic approach to learning that uses a wide range of hands-on resources. As well as basic numerical fluency, we develop skills such as problem solving and reasoning through activities that use shapes and measures, beginning the development of spatial awareness. Maths is a hugely important part of the Early Years curriculum and receiving a good grounding is an essential life skill that enables our pupils to succeed in other areas.
We adopt a maths mastery approach to all areas of the curriculum by following the White Rose Maths scheme of work. This framework enables children to explore maths in detail, using mathematical vocabulary to reason and explain their workings, whilst developing an excellent grasp on key mathematical topics, such as number and fractions. We believe that children who have an excellent grasp on the fundamental topic areas will not only become confident and fluent mathematicians, but will also develop a deeper and more secure understanding throughout the rest of the mathematics curriculum. Teachers are encouraged to develop the freedom to direct learning in unexpected and new directions dependent upon formative assessment and seek ways to extend knowledge and understanding by encouraging pupils to apply their fluency to a range of different situations.
The expectation is that the majority of pupils will move through the scheme of work broadly the same pace, however, decisions about when to progress should always be based on the security of pupils’ understanding and their readiness to progress to the next stage. Pupils who grasp concepts rapidly should be challenged through being offered rich and sophisticated problems before any acceleration through new content.
Those who are not sufficiently fluent with earlier material should consolidate their understanding, including through additional practice, before moving on. Furthermore, to ensure children’s skills and abilities continue to grow in mathematics, despite such a challenging year, we are implementing a programme of short, focused and purposeful intervention sessions, which aim to fill any gaps in knowledge created by the lockdown periods.
We use Milestones for teachers and Curriculum Leaders to monitor coverage and track progress across the curriculum, ensuring appropriate sequencing is in place. We use the milestones created by Chris Quigley Education, in conjunction with our planning to ensure the children develop their knowledge and skills as they move from Early Years through to Key Stage 1 and 2.