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Maths at St Mary's

Mathematics is a major life skill for the future. Maths is a core subject;  it is taught every day and across a range of subjects.

Our aim in Mathematics is that each child leaves our school with the skills to meet the demands of everyday life in the modern world.
We want all children to use and apply their mathematical skills confidently, use mathematical language effectively and to be fluent mathematical thinkers. We want to develop confident mathematicians who can both ask and answer questions about their learning and who can use and apply their skills in a range of mathematical situations.

Mathematics at St Mary’s is based on our belief that all children are entitled to educational excellence. It is our aspiration for all children to achieve highly, for our school to be a great school and every individual to continually improve. Daily maths sessions form an essential part of our mission to develop deep mathematical thinking and understanding.

Mastering maths means pupils acquiring a deep, long-term, secure and adaptable understanding of the subject. Within the mathematics curriculum sits a firm foundation of equality. With the right support and a culture of high expectations, the vast majority of children are able to achieve the age-related expected standard (unless for specific reasons e.g. SEND). Embracing this belief alongside effective quality first teaching, tends to result in greater success.

We aspire for all learners to become confident mathematicians who are critical thinkers and problem solvers, not only whilst in their primary education but in their secondary school and beyond.

Principles for Effective Teaching

Children’s chances of success are maximised if they develop deep and lasting understanding of mathematical procedures and concepts.

To ensure clarity for all, long term plans within our school map out the coverage and progression for each year group in line with the National Curriculum. From the long-term planning document,  we will break down concepts into smaller steps to gain a deep understanding of each building block required to understand the wider concept. 


Key Elements for the teaching of Maths at St Mary's

In line with the National Curriculum and following guidance from NECTM and White Rose Maths, we will use the five BIG IDEAS for the teaching of maths:

Coherence - Lessons are broken down into small connected steps that gradually unfold the concept, providing access for all children and leading to a generalisation of the concept and the ability to apply the concept to a range of contexts.

Representation and Structure - Representations used in lessons expose the mathematical structure being taught, the aim being that students can do the maths without recourse to the representation

Mathematical thinking - If taught ideas are to be understood deeply, they must not merely be passively received but must be worked on by the student: thought about, reasoned with and discussed with others

Fluency - Quick and efficient recall of facts and procedures and the flexibility to move between different contexts and representations of mathematics

Variation - Variation is twofold. It is firstly about how the teacher represents the concept being taught, often in more than one way, to draw attention to critical aspects, and to develop deep and holistic understanding. It is also about the sequencing of the episodes, activities and exercises used within a lesson and follow up practice, paying attention to what is kept the same and what changes, to connect the mathematics and draw attention to mathematical relationships and structure.


Maths Long Term Plan

Our Long Term Plan shows the maths curriculum for all age groups and for each year. Subject areas in maths build up throughout the year and follow a spiral curriculum wherby learning is fully embedded and secure. Fluency is encouraged  and developed throughout the whole school via our KIRFs and Early BIrd Maths as well as the core maths sessions every day.

Calculation policy

It is hugely important that everyone at St Mary's teaches maths with the same expectations, understanding, vocabulary and pictoral representations. Whilst we encourage variation as one of the five 'Big Ideas', it is also important that children are not confused by language / pictorial representations or written processes  which may be misleading.

Early Bird Maths and KIRFs

At St. Mary's, we use time every day to develop fluency in the children's in maths. Knowing and recalling key facts without having to think about them ensures they are not cognitively overwhelmed when dealing with new concepts or processes.


To ensure children develop a full understanding of mathematical language, it is essential that all staff and pupils are secure in the vocabulary used to explain key concepts and processes.

Parents may also with to familarise themselves with the vocabulary used in our daily maths lessons.

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