St Cross Catholic Primary School
Policy for Learning and Teaching of Mathematics
At St Cross Primary School, we strongly believe that Mathematics is a tool for everyday life critical to science, technology and engineering and necessary for financial literacy and most forms of employment. It is a whole network of concepts and relationships which provide a way of viewing and making sense of the world. It is used to analyse and communicate information and ideas and to tackle a range of practical tasks and real life problems. It also provides the materials and means for creating new imaginative worlds to explore as well as gain a sense of enjoyment and curiosity about the subject. The school’s policy is based on the New National Curriculum 2014 document.
It is our aim to develop:
§ a positive attitude towards mathematics and an awareness of the fascination and enjoyment of mathematics
§ 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.
§ competence and confidence in mathematical knowledge, concepts and skills
§ an ability to solve problems by following a line of enquiry, to reason mathematically, to think logically and to work systematically and accurately.
§ initiative and an ability to work both independently and in cooperation with others
§ an ability to communicate mathematics using mathematical vocabulary
§ an ability to use and apply mathematics across the curriculum and in real life with an increasing sophistication, including breaking down problems into a series of simpler steps and persevering in seeking solutions
§ create a partnership with parents, other schools and a wide community, to promote a more inclusive educational system and a sense of citizenship.
Our school scheme of work is a working document and as such is composed of medium term maps as well as ongoing plans produced on a week by week basis. This is developed from the new National Curriculum September 2014 and takes into consideration the needs of our children.
Medium Term Planning:
This identifies objectives to be covered for each unit of work, key skills and concepts to be addressed, problem solving activities to strengthen each concept and assessment opportunities.
This identifies key areas of learning and will include areas of weakness identified by the teacher through the week and is matched to Medium Term Plans. Each class teacher is responsible for the mathematics in their class in consultation with and with guidance from the mathematics coordinator.
The approach to the teaching of mathematics within the school is based on four key principles:
• Dedicated Morning Maths session - addressing any common misconceptions
• Direct teaching and interactive oral work with the whole class and groups
• An emphasis on mental calculation and problem solving
• Differentiation with all pupils engaged in mathematics relating to a common theme.
Elements of mathematics are taught daily and should consist of:
• A starter consisting of oral work and mental calculation
• A main teaching activity where there is teaching input and pupil activities. Work can be organised for whole class, groups, pairs or individuals
• A plenary to summarise or round up the lesson, or for homework.
The Early Years Foundation Stage ‘Problem Solving, Reasoning and Numeracy’.
‘Problem Solving, Reasoning and Numeracy’ is broken down into developmental ages. They should be met through an appropriate foundation environment that includes songs, rhymes, games and imaginative play. Children’s mathematical development arises through everyday experiences, and the classroom environment should emulate these experiences wherever possible to allow natural development to take place.
By the end of the Reception year an Early Years Foundation Stage Profile booklet will be completed for each child. This sums up their progress and learning needs at the end of the Early Years Foundation Stage. The Early Years Foundation Stage Profile is based on ongoing observations and assessments over all six areas of learning within the Early Years Foundation Stage.
Each child’s typical developments and achievements will be recorded on assessment scales. Completed Profiles will be used as part of our annual report to parents. The school will submit numerical results to the LA as they are required and as statutory assessment at the end of the Early Years Foundation Stage.
Special Educational Needs and Disability:
Children with SENd’s are taught within the daily mathematics lesson. Where applicable children’s ISPs incorporate suitable objectives and teachers keep these objectives in mind when planning work. When additional support staff are available to support groups or individual children they work collaboratively with the class teacher.
Within the daily mathematics lesson teachers not only provide activities to support children who find mathematics difficult but also activities that provide appropriate challenges for children who are high achievers in mathematics.
We incorporate mathematics into a wide range of cross-curricular subjects and seek to take advantage of multi-cultural aspects of mathematics.
In the daily mathematics lesson, we support children with English as an additional language in a variety of ways for example, repeating instructions, speaking clearly, emphasising key words, using picture cues, playing mathematical games, using Cuisenaire, Numicon, encouraging children to join in counting, chanting, finger games and rhymes.
This should always be incorporated into all mathematics lessons and can be done in various ways:
· Stepped Activities which become more difficult and demanding but cater for the less able in the early sections.
· Common Tasks which are open ended activities/investigations where differentiation is by outcome.
· Resourcing which provides a variety of resources depending on abilities eg. Cuisenaire rods, Numicon, counters, cubes, 100 squares, number lines, mirrors.
· Grouping which is flexible and includes children identified through review and assessment processes as having misconceptions about a concept, area of study or skill. Adults will support these groups.
Mathematical vocabulary is a very important element of the mathematics lesson. Children need to understand mathematical vocabulary if they are to present a mathematical justification, argument or proof. Staff will need to differentiate for their class where necessary. The use of visual symbols, signing and PECs (Picture Exchange Communication system) should be used to aid comprehension. Each class has a copy of the Mathematical language that should be used within each domain. A copy of the whole school mathematics vocabulary is available in the Maths Coordinator’s Folder.
• Display vocabulary on the maths working wall in each class.
• Use sign language and symbols to aid comprehension.
• Make a Mathematical dictionary – Add words and their meaning/s along with a picture to refer to at any point during the year.
• Model correct use of language.
• Ask questions to ensure understanding.
• Add a list of appropriate mathematical language to the weekly maths plan.
Assessment for learning should occur throughout the entire maths lesson, enabling teachers/teaching assistants to adapt their teaching/input to meet the children’s needs.
- On a daily basis children should self-assess against the learning objective and success criteria, giving them a sense of success. Children should know when they are meeting their targets and be self-assessing against those too.
- Pupil’s work should be marked in line with the Marking Policy and should model how corrections should be made, giving children a chance to learn from their misconceptions or incorrect methods.
- Future lesson design should depend on class success evaluated through marking and observations made during the lesson.
Formal summative assessment of all pupils takes place on an ongoing basis throughout the academic year using School Pupil Tracker Online. The data is analysed termly to identify cohort and individual pupil performance over time in comparison to expected standards and knowledge and understanding of specific aspects of mathematical understanding.
Comparison of groups of children e.g. FSM, Girls/Boys, SEN will be made and discussions held as to how we can ‘Close the Gap’.
Formative assessment takes place daily through oral and written feedback to the child on their performance and targets for improvement.
Parents are informed of their pupils’ performance informally through parent teacher liaison. This is discussed more formally at parent-teacher consultation evenings and through the annual written statement on their child’s progress about Mathematics during the Autumn, Spring and Summer term.
This policy was reviewed in September 2015 and will be reviewed again in January 2016 and will be amended in response to any changes or advice given by the DfE, especially regarding assessment procedures.