Maths at Plymouth Grove Primary School
Our Maths Leader is Mrs Turner.
Article 29 of the UNCRC: a child or young person's education should help their mind, body and talents be the best they can
Global Goal 4: Quality Education
At Plymouth Grove Primary School we aim to create lifelong mathematicians, who are able to use their skills in a variety of contexts across the curriculum and in everyday life. All children are encouraged to be independent learners, who are always ready for the next stage of their educational journey. In addition, children are encouraged to have mathematical fluency and an understanding of different types of reasoning.
Each year group works towards the national curriculum objectives and a mastery approach is used to ensure that pupils have the opportunity to achieve a greater level of understanding. The school understands that speaking English as an additional language is a barrier for a significant proportion of pupils. Therefore, pupils have the opportunity to frequently use new vocabulary in a variety of ways and solve problems orally with an emphasis on mathematical language.
All pupils have the opportunity to access their year group objectives and develop the skills that are required for their age group. Intervention groups are used to develop children’s knowledge and to allow pupils to make accelerated progress, in order for them to access their year group curriculum. Maths is taught throughout the curriculum, for example through the creation of graphs and charts in science and coordinates in geography.
Children are taught maths on a daily basis in all year groups. All areas of the curriculum are taught using the White Rose Maths Scheme. Each year group studies all the core maths topics in the national curriculum: number, measure, geometry and statistics. Maths journals, based on the key concepts of each year group, are an important part of a child’s learning journey through Plymouth Grove. Each child, in KS2, creates a maths journal, where they are able to practise a variety of different reasoning problems (Evaluative, Descriptive, Creative and investigative)in a range of contexts. Children are expected to present their information clearly and take part in oral discussions related to their journal entry. Journals are assessed daily by teachers, to check pupils knowledge and misconceptions. This enables teachers to adapt any future planning so any issues can be addressed. Teachers use research around retrieval practice and cognitive load theory to inform their teaching. The use of low stakes quizzing and the frequent return to key ideas is used to assist children in the addition of concepts to their long term memory and the ability to apply them fluently. Mistakes are encouraged throughout school and children are supported in how best to learn from them. All children have autonomy over their own work and self and peer assessment is often used to help children understand their errors and misconceptions. The subject leader also ensures that members of staff continue to receive CPD, often by cascading down any important information from courses and Teacher Research Groups. There are subject meetings and workshop sessions, which allow staff to work with the maths leader to improve their confidence on specific areas of pedagogy or the content of the curriculum.
Children in the Foundation Stage are at the beginning of their mastery journey and a deep understanding of number is seen as crucial in their development. As in KS1 and KS2, retrieval practice is common when children are learning to count and activities such as “show me 5” help children with their cognitive load and information retention. Maths is a key theme throughout learning areas ensuring that mathematical understanding and challenge is implemented in the children’s daily play and routine.
Staff in EYFS and KS1 work hard to ensure that pupils have good “number sense” and fully understand number. This includes work on subitising and number bonds. To support this the school has recently introduced the “Mastering Number” scheme developed by the NCTEM. This schemes underpins almost all learning in EYFS and is used to develop fluency in KS1.
Year 6 children begin the year by taking a previous SATS test. The tests are used for teachers to understand any areas of difficulty particular pupils or a class may have and to assess future progress. Pupil’s progress is measured on a yearly basis by the NFER tests and the improvement which children make on these. More frequently, the impact of learning, is measured by low stakes quizzing, journal assessment and teachers assessment for learning strategies. The sharing of good practice e.g maths journals also allows for children’s learning to be monitored. The teachers of Plymouth Grove have researched areas of maths learning including working memory and retrieval practice. The positive impact of this research has meant that these ideas are now used in maths lessons to enable pupils to know and remember more. Pupils have the opportunity to share their thoughts on the teaching of maths in parliament meetings, where pupil volunteers feedback on the views of their peers. During the foundation stage, the impact of children’s learning and the progress they have made is measured by Development Matters and at the end of Reception children are expected to have met the Early learning goals, which include a knowledge of numbers 1-20 and being able to use vocabulary relating to shape, space and measure.
Fischer Family Trust curriculum tracker is used to record the progress the progress that pupils are making in terms of knowing more, remembering more and being able to do more at the end of each academic year. This will record whether the children are working towards the age related expectations, at the age related expectations or exceeding the age related expectations.
These judgements will be quality assured by subject leaders using first-hand evidence of how pupils are doing, drawing together evidence from pupil interviews, observations of tasks, reading tasks, work scrutinies and discussions with pupils about what they remembered about the content they have studied.
These judgements will inform the curriculum and whether children are ready for the next stage of their education.