Subject Leader: Miss Gordon (Temporary)
At Lee Brigg Infant and Nursery School we believe that the teaching of mathematics should equip children with the strategies, knowledge and mathematical language to help them to understand and make sense of the world around them.
Our aim is that all of our children become independent learners, who can apply logical reasoning, problem solving skills and the ability to think in abstract ways.
Mathematics is a whole network of concepts and relationships, which children can use to analyse and communicate information and ideas and to tackle a range of practical tasks and real life problems. Mathematics teaching and learning at Lee Brigg is not confined to 'Maths lessons', instead where possible links are established across a range of subject areas to support the understanding that Maths is real!
Mathematics is integral in everyday life and with this in mind we endeavour to ensure that our children develop a healthy and enthusiastic attitude towards mathematics that will stay with them and make them confident lifelong learners in maths.
Our approach to the curriculum in mathematics is based upon a language rich, active learning experience. We believe that children learn best if they are exposed to new concepts with hands on practise and immersion in new technical vocabulary. Our children are taught mathematical knowledge through the support of concrete resources and pictorial representations, before moving on to a more abstract approach. We ensure that they have a firm grasp of the four key calculations, (addition, subtraction, division and multiplication), so that by year 2 children are confident with abstract learning and problem solving.
Children use practical equipment e.g. numicon, counting bears and counters to gain a solid understanding of mathematical concepts, making links with new learning and developing analytical thinking for problem solving. In Foundation Stage and Year 1 every new concept in mathematics is taught practically and in real contexts first, to support understanding and deepen learning.
When children are ready they replace concrete apparatus with a pictorial representation - essentially a drawing or picture which still provides them with a support to access their learning.
Once children really understand the concept, they can then move into the abstract - using numbers and symbols and formal written methods.
At the point in which children are secure with their fluency in areas of the mathematics curriculum - their thinking is challenged and extended through open ended, high order questioning and problem solving activities. Through these, children develop the skills of perseverance and resilience to reach the solution, experiencing success - an essential life skill which we value at Lee Brigg Infant and Nursery School.
How is the content / theme chosen?
The content is chosen to ensure coverage of the knowledge and skills expectations as set out in the National Curriculum programmes of study, as well as the EYFS framework. Content may be linked to teaching and learning in other subject areas, such as Science. The content may be adapted or changed, based upon the needs of specific cohorts.
How do we ensure progression of knowledge and skills?
At Lee Brigg Infant and Nursery School we have in place, for each subject area, a knowledge and skills progression document, which is used for planning, to ensure sequenced and appropriate content for specfic year groups, as well as a build up of knowledge and skills.
Aside from these documents, teachers will plan activities and opportunities for differentiation, in order to meet the needs of all learners.
How is the subject taught?
The school does not use one set scheme for the teaching of maths, instead we work to the children's needs and next steps. There is strong subject knowledge in EYFS where children, once they have acquired and reinforced the basic concepts are challenged to work beyond the early learning goals.
We have an EYFS curriculum that moves from practical concrete into basic and abstract calculations (as part of readiness for KS1). Children are exposed early on to key concepts such as place value, even in nursery, so that they have a good basis from which to work from in Key Stage 1.
Staff across school are consistent in their use of the school's calculation policy and we have a mathematics curriculum which is designed to revisit arithmetic content at points in the year. This requires the recall of learning, which embeds concepts in the long term memory. In the last two years, we have refined the practice of ensuring that children who understand the content are challenged, but children who need further time to develop fluency are giving additional practise to secure concepts before moving on. Clear strategies are used for the teaching of the four calculations, children are then ready to engage in mastery elements of the mathematics curriculum.
Maths is taught daily in school through discrete lessons. However, it is also taught across other subject areas where appropriate links are made, so that children can continue to embed and apply their knowledge. Each day, within lessons there are opportunities to revisit key concepts and knowledge, e.g. number bonds to ten, in order to ensure that children remember and learn these concepts effectively.
How is maths taught in EYFS?
Maths is taught daily as part of a focus, discrete teaching activity in EYFS. Children are then provided with learning activities based upon this teaching, so that they can refine and develop their knowledge and start to apply their skills. In addition to this, opportunities for mathematics teaching and learning are developed through the routines of the school day, e.g. counting how many children are here today. Mathematics challenges, as well as opportunities to apply skills and embed knowledge, are carefully planned for through the areas of provision in both the indoor and outdoor learning environments.
How do we know that our children are making progress?
Ongoing assessments of the children's knowledge and skills is observed by the class teacher. Misconceptions are addressed and next steps carefully planned. Children's outcomes are compared to the subject specific skills and knowledge documents. Senior leaders and subject leaders gather an overview of children's learning and ouctomes through monitoring activities. Regular assessments are collated for children in EYFS and Key Stage 1 which are used to plan approriate next steps for their future learning, as well as provide an overview of learning within a subject area across the whole school.
How do we promote Communication & Language (including reading), Personal, Social and Emotional Development and Physical Health and Wellbeing?
Relationships are promoted as children work collaboratively, listen to and question the ideas of others. Children are also expected to develop their independence and resilience when carrying out challenges
Children are introduced to and use a range of new vocabulary, which they become confident in using. This allows them to practise asking questions and encourages them to articulate answers by reasoning and using evidence from their learning.
If you would like any further information on our mathematics curriculum or the teaching of mathematics at Lee Brigg Infant and Nursery School, please contact our school mathematics leader.
School Calculation Policy
Please click below for Year Group Expectations in Mathematics.
Reception end of year expectations for parents
Year 1 Expectations
Year 2 Expectations