Intent – The vision
Mathematics is a subject which is celebrated not only for its practical functions in everyday life, but also for being a stimulating and satisfying subject with an intrinsic beauty. At HTPD School, mathematics teaching is centred around the well-founded belief that a lifelong love of learning mathematics begins in the primary stage of children’s education. With the right opportunities, encouragement and inspiration, every child can leave HTPD feeling that they are a mathematician.
Implementation – How we achieve our goal
Mathematics teaching and learning at HTPD follows a mastery approach and is closely linked to the highly-rated curriculum advocated by the White Rose Maths Hub. Children learn in mixed ability classes and challenge for children of all abilities is prioritised through the activities chosen. The curriculum is divided into blocks of learning focused around particular concepts or strands of the subject to allow children to spend sufficient time on a concept to fully understand it. The blocks of learning, and the individual lessons within each block, are carefully structured so that concepts are covered in an order which ensures any prior knowledge required for new learning has already taken place and opportunities to recap previous learning are prioritised. Care is taken at every stage not to accelerate on to new content at the expense of achieving deeper understanding.
Within each individual lesson, this approach is further embraced, with planning which focuses on the small steps required to achieve the lesson’s objective. Lessons include elements of fluency, reasoning and problem solving, allowing children to unpick the structure of concepts within lessons. By using dialogue and discussion, teachers encourage children to spot patterns, make connections and generalise about the concept being studied. Learning is supported through a variety of physical and visual models, before moving on to more abstract representations. Significant time in Early Years and Key Stage 1 is given over to developing children’s sense of number so that subsequent learning is based on a sound understanding. Techniques for calculation and problem solving are modelled by teachers, with common misconceptions highlighted and used to deepen understanding. Thorough consideration is given to the timing and order of when calculation strategies are introduced. Discussion about the effectiveness and efficiency of mental, informal and formal strategies takes place regularly in classrooms as the children’s repertoire of approaches widens. Any links with other subjects are explored and celebrated to give children a clear picture of how mathematics is embedded in the world around them.
Impact – How do we know our vision has come to fruition?
Children leave HTPD with a zest for mathematical learning, having experienced both the aesthetic and practical value of the subject. Their learning prepares them well for the next stage of their mathematics education, as well as laying the early foundations for careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. In addition, the problem solving and investigating that forms such a crucial part of their studies, gives them the resilience, logic and critical thinking skills to approach challenges of any nature and allows them to ‘embrace the future with hope and confidence.’