At Banstead Infant school we believe that mathematics is a key life skill which equips children with a powerful set of tools with which to understand the world. We provide a hands on approach to mathematics allowing children to demonstrate their knowledge in a variety of different forms through concrete objects, pictorial representations and abstract learning. To become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics, including through varied and frequent practise with increasingly complex problems in order to apply knowledge accurately. To solve problems by applying their mathematical skills to a variety of problems in an efficient way. To reason by explaining and making links to known facts, whilst demonstrating an understanding of mathematical language. We want our children to gain the skills and knowledge which will lead them to become confident mathematicians. Our intent is to spark curiosity, engage reasoning, secure understanding and deepen maths learning for all.
The National Curriculum for Maths aims to ensure that all pupils:
- 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.
- Reason mathematically by following a line of enquiry, conjecturing relationships and generalisations, and developing an argument, justification or proof using mathematical language
- Can solve problems by applying their mathematics to a variety of routine and non-routine problems with increasing sophistication, including breaking down problems into a series of simpler steps and persevering in
Mathematics is essential in everything we count or calculate and in problems which we have to solve in our daily lives. Children’s knowledge, skills and understanding in mathematics develop as they use it in practical activities, to solve relevant and meaningful problems and explore the patterns and relationships between numbers.
We aim to encourage our children to remember knowledge and build on their prior learning by ensuring we carefully consider how knowledge is sequenced. Teachers must understand what children must know and be able to do in each area of mathematics by the end of each academic year; they must recognise what has come before and what children will continue to learn in the next year.
Our curriculum design is underpinned by the following fundamental principles:
- Everyone Can Learn Maths to the Highest Level
- Mistakes are really valuable
- Questions are really Important
- Maths is about creativity and number sense
- Maths is about connections and communicating
- Depth is much more important than speed
- Maths is about learning not performing
- Maths is a growth subject, it takes time to learn and it is all about effort.
- Mathematics will help children in their lives, not because they will see the same types of problems in the real world but because they are learning that maths involves asking questions, noticing relationships and seeking out patterns.
In EYFS, the ways in which every child engages with other people and their environment – playing and exploring, active learning, and creating and thinking critically – underpin learning and development across all areas and support the child to remain an effective and motivated learner. Our young mathematicians will be provided with many exciting opportunities, through planned purposeful play and a mix of adult-led and child-initiated activities. Many opportunities are provided to help our young learners to build firm mathematical foundations.
We follow the NCETM programme, Mastering Number in EYFS, which provides a range of opportunities for the children to become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics, to reason mathematically in a range of situations and to develop skills in problem solving. Children are explicitly taught the skills of subitising, cardinality, ordinality and counting, composition and comparison.
Key Stage 1
Throughout Key Stage 1, we follow White Rose Maths, adapting as appropriate to fully support the needs of all our children, and teach a broad and challenging curriculum. We also use the NCTEM Mastering Number, which supports our teaching of fluency and mental maths. Representations are carefully chosen to enable all children to understand mathematical concepts. The children gain a wide range of knowledge and mathematical skills, in accordance with the National Curriculum requirements. Our Mathematics curriculum will provide many opportunities for children to develop confidence and fluency in all areas of maths. The use of practical equipment, such as concrete objects and representational models and images, along with modelling and scaffolding from the class teacher and adult support in the class, will support the children to gain a deeper conceptual understanding before being challenged through tasks and questions to explain their reasoning and solve a range of problems, allowing them to demonstrate a greater depth of understanding. The pitch and pace of lessons ensure that the children make good progress as teaching expectations are high.
If you were to walk into a Maths lesson at Banstead Infant School, you would see:
- engaged children working with concrete resources
- discussion and collaboration as a whole class and with learning partners
- children making connections with prior knowledge
- all children using mathematical vocabulary to explain their learning
- children challenged through problem solving and reasoning activities
- teachers supporting and challenging learners
- resilient and determined learners
Banstead Infant School is currently transitioning from the White Rose Scheme of Learning to the GLF Maths Curriculum. This Curriculum is driven by the DfE Primary Guidance in Mathematics and the NCETM Professional Development Materials. It ensures teaching of the whole of the National Curriculum in Mathematics, but it also identifies and prioritises the most important knowledge, skills, and understanding children need to secure year upon year to successfully progress to the next. The identified complex concepts are presented as a series of connected, microscopic steps in learning that logically build on one another, which are collated within purposefully and coherently sequenced units of learning. Teachers’ subject, pedagogical, and pedagogical content knowledge is supported with rich guidance, which includes signposts to manipulatives and representations, language, difficult points and common misconceptions, and ideas for independent practice and application exercises. As such, it exemplifies principles of effective curriculum design outlined in sources including the recommendations of the EY-KS1 EEF Guidance reports, the DfE’s Early Career and NPQLT framework, and Ofsted’s applying the EIF to mathematics documentation.
By the time a child leaves our school we aim for them to be able to approach any problem and use multiple methods to solve or find a solution. Children will be able to explain to a friend how they came up with the answer using resources and mathematical vocabulary. They will have developed their resilience to overcome problems that require them to use a range of different operations or processes. They will be more mathematically observant and have a deeper knowledge of number rather than a superficial understanding. All of this in turn will enable our children to be efficient mathematicians.