At St. Mary’s, we take a mastery approach to mathematics. Our maths programme has been written specifically for the children at St. Mary’s, in collaboration with a senior maths consultant, in order to provide a rich and accessible curriculum for all students. The goal of our programme is to develop mathematically fluent, confident and proficient young people.
We work on building mathematical fluency and reasoning skills and this is developed across the school in a clear and consistent progression for all year groups:
The concepts covered within these areas are:
Place Value, Measurement, Fractions, Algebra
Addition, Subtraction, Geometry (Shape, Position and Direction), Data
Multiplication, Division, Ratio, Scaling
Maths lessons at St. Mary’s involve students employing resources; both concrete and pictorial, to explore and develop their understanding of the key concepts of primary mathematics. There is a consistent focus on reasoning and applying the knowledge, which they have and are gaining, to problems and challenges in a real-world and familiar context.
At St. Mary’s, we also place a strong value on the importance of mental calculations and arithmetic. A range of strategies are taught and practised in each year group, with children learning and being encouraged to select the best strategy for each calculation they are faced with. Arithmetic is worked on daily, in order to maintain previous learning fresh in the children’s minds, as well as providing opportunities for them to employ and apply what they are currently learning in class.
Care is taken, during lessons and in home learning tasks, to introduce the correct mathematical vocabulary to students. Teachers also model and insist on its correct usage when discussing work in lessons or recording activities in maths books.
Our teachers provide their children with regular opportunities to challenge themselves and deepen their mathematical thinking. This enables confident learners to expand on their mastery of concepts whilst also exposing those less confident members of the class to the ways in which their learning can be applied and its intrinsic value. As well as this, any children struggling to access the curriculum for their year group are supported in their mathematical learning, in order for them to be able to operate, as much as possible, within the concepts that the rest of their peers are learning.
Our children are able to approach mathematical problems with confidence and armed with a range of knowledge and strategies to use in their solving. They can talk in detail, using the correct mathematical terms and vocabulary, about what they have done, the method they have chosen and why they have done it the way that they have. St. Mary’s students are able to understand how mathematical areas are connected and related and can use this knowledge to approach and solve a broad range of age-appropriate problems. Above all, our students recognise the value of being numerically-literate and mathematically-fluent.
All children in the school, from Year 1 upwards, have a login for the Times Tables Rock Stars website. The site provides children with a fun and rewarding way to practise, and eventually master, their multiplication facts. Regular use of the games on the site enables children to master all aspects of the multiplication facts (Times Tables), including the related division facts, in an accessible and easy way. There are also regular opportunities to pit themselves against each other and their peers across the country...and world!
At St. Mary’s, we take part in maths week each year. Our aim is to make maths enjoyable and more accessible for our students, especially those who are not as confident as they would like to be. As such, we focus on maths games and puzzles to really give the message that maths is fun!
We compete annually in the North Kensington maths contest, coming third last year. This is a great opportunity for a hand-picked, crack squad of St. Mary’s children to show off their mathematical prowess against other local schools.
If you are thinking of supporting your child at home with their maths, these links may prove helpful: