The three aims of the Maths curriculum (reasoning, fluency and problem solving) sit at the heart of all we do. We aim to develop fluent mathematicians who have the knowledge, skills, vocabulary and resilience to tackle and explain a range of Mathematical problems. We encourage children to make connections within their Mathematics sessions and across the wider curriculum to ensure that they can apply their understanding of Maths to the world around them. We provide opportunities for children to practise skills, apply them to a range of contexts and to reason around these concepts.
As a school we have centred our curriculum around the concrete – pictorial – abstract (CPA) approach to aid in the improvements of teaching and learning of mathematics. This approach allows children to explore concepts in a hands-on way and make connections between the abstract numbers and their actual meaning.
Planning for our maths lessons currently follow the White Rose Overviews of learning (These can be found on this link here for each year group Maths resources for teachers | White Rose Maths). This ensures a clear progression of skills, not only within year groups but across the school. White Rose has been key to our development of small steps in learning as the unit overviews break objectives down into the fundamental skills the children need to be able to understand and achieve.
We promote Mathematical talk in all our classrooms – using key sentence stems and vocabulary which equip the children to be able to reason and explain their approaches to a Mathematical problem. As part of this Mathematical talk, questioning is key to helping the children become fluent in their reasoning ability. Some examples of questioning in our Maths lessons include:
- Why do you think this?
- How do you know?
- What patterns can you see?
- If you know this, what else do you know?
- Can you prove it?
- Can you show me?
- Which is the odd one out and why?
Our calculation policy has been written in line with the key principles of the CPA (concrete, pictorial and abstract) approach and using the White Rose representations to ensure a progression of skills from Early Years to Year 6. The various representations build on each other to lead the children to the abstract method they need, but also gives them a stronger understanding of what is happening within the calculation.
At The Victory Primary, we believe that being able to recall times tables is important and should be taught in schools at a young age to ensure fluency in more complex mathematical calculations. Our sessions are delivered to encourage pupils to become fluent and are delivered through varied and frequent practice, developing conceptual understanding and the ability to recall and apply this knowledge rapidly and accurately. Automatic memorisation of times tables frees up working memory, allowing children to focus on other tasks such as problem solving.
The concept of multiplication is taught through our maths curriculum learning time. Delivery of this is carried out using a range of manipulatives, representations and methods. Children in Years 2-6 also receive twice weekly times table fluency sessions. These are a combination of teacher led recall and low stakes testing.
Low-stakes tests are timed to promote recall and prevent children relying on inefficient methods. They are designed to help increase fluency with learnt times tables and to increase memory recall and prevent children from forgetting.