Mathematics is a creative and highly inter-connected discipline that has been developed over centuries, providing the solution to some of history’s most intriguing problems. It is essential to everyday life, critical to science, technology and engineering, and necessary for financial literacy and most forms of employment. A high-quality mathematics education therefore provides a foundation for understanding the world, the ability to reason mathematically, an appreciation of the beauty and power of mathematics, and a sense of enjoyment and curiosity about the subject
(Mathematics Programmes of Study 2013)
The National Curriculum for Mathematics 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 seeking solutions.
Our aim is to make mathematics relevant, interesting and accessible for all of the pupils at our school. Mathematics is taught as a daily lesson and includes regular practice in number bonds, multiplication tables and written arithmetic methods. The key expectations of our 5-part teaching and learning model mirrors that of the primary national curriculum for mathematics:
- Pupils become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics, so that they develop conceptual understanding and the ability to recall and apply knowledge rapidly and accurately
- Pupils can reason mathematically
- Pupils can solve problems by applying their mathematics to a variety of routine and non-routine problems
The school has achieved the Basic Skills National Quality Mark in recognition of its provision for mathematics - Basic Skills are at the heart of teaching and learning at Castlefort School, as it is seen to be the foundation of unlocking the rest of the curriculum for the pupils (November 2017).
Good or outstanding mathematics teaching:
- Fosters mathematical understanding of new concepts and methods, including teachers’ explanations and the way they require pupils to think and reason mathematically for themselves.
- Ensures that pupils acquire mathematical knowledge appropriate to their age and starting points and enables them to recall it rapidly and apply it fluently and accurately, including when calculating efficiently and in applying arithmetic algorithms.
- Uses resources and approaches to enable pupils in the class to understand and master the mathematics they are learning.
- Develops depth of understanding and readiness for the next stage, be it the next lesson, unit of work, year or key stage, and including into post 16 mathematics. Note that the national curriculum for mathematics at key stages 1 and 2 specifies the aims and then states, ‘The expectation is that the majority of pupils will move through the programmes of study at broadly the same pace’. At all key stages, the national curriculum states, ‘Decisions about when to progress should always be based on the security of pupils’ understanding and their readiness to progress to the next stage. Pupils who grasp concepts rapidly should be challenged through being offered rich and sophisticated problems before any acceleration through new content. Those who are not sufficiently fluent with earlier material should consolidate their understanding, including through additional practice, before moving on’.
- Enables pupils to solve a variety of mathematical problems, applying the mathematical knowledge and skills they have been taught.