All that we do at St Joseph's is shaped by our commitment to our Faith. At St Joseph’s, we believe that every child has the potential to succeed in Mathematics – to be fluent in the fundamentals, to reason and think mathematically and to solve problems by applying their skills. Through our Mathematics curriculum, we strive to give each child the tools and skills to be a successful, fully numerate and resilient citizen.
Our Vision for Maths
At St Joseph's, we deliver a high quality Mastery Curriculum in Mathematics which, in turn, 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.
We offer high-quality teaching and support to both staff and children, and actively encourage everyone to develop their personal skills of resilience, collaboration, creativity, exploration and enquiry in Maths and across the wider curriculum. Children are aware that these skills learnt in Maths will be required to become well-informed adults, for example, through understanding finance, measure and calculations. Year 5 Enterprise Week and annual participation in the ‘My Money’ week in the Summer term provides opportunities to gain skills, knowledge and confidence in money matters to thrive in society.
Through a carefully organised curriculum, key knowledge is gained, rehearsed, retrieved and built upon in order to make connections across themes and year groups. Carefully chosen vocabulary and subject specific language underpin all topics, leading to high quality reasoning, explanations and justifications.
The Framework for Learning in Mathematics
Throughout each academic year, children focus on learning in the following areas:
- Number and Place value
- Calculations (including Algebra in the older year groups)
- Geometry - Position and Direction
- Geometry - Shape
- Fractions, Decimals and Percentages
This learning is blocked into units that last between a week and a month, which allows children to achieve a deep understanding of each topic.
How Teachers Embed Learning and Skills
Children experience daily Maths lessons, carefully planned by teachers using the Power Maths scheme. This reflects the National Curriculum for Maths and encourages collaboration, resilience and exploration. Through these lessons, they are given opportunities to build on their prior knowledge and to reason and problem solve in each area. In Reception, the teacher carries out a daily Maths focus session to introduce new learning and all children are required to carry out either independent or adult-led tasks linked to this learning.
They complete daily 'Speedy Maths' activities to encourage automaticity in their calculations. We aim to build deep foundational knowledge through small steps teaching which can then be applied as children encounter new learning.
All of our children have access to Numbots and Times Table Rock Stars to support their home learning and take part in challenges across the school. As part of our Home Learning policy, all children are expected to complete 10 minutes a day practising their maths skills – Numbots and TTRS are used widely. Children in Key Stage 2 are provided with a CGP homework book for Maths and teachers set a weekly task from these books.
Achieving Mastery in Mathematics
We are delighted in our children's attainment and progress in mathematics - end of key stage data and feedback from parents and secondary schools tell us that our children start their next phase of learning fully prepared to build upon the primary skills and knowledge learnt at St Joseph's. All teachers regularly assess pupils’ work against 'Ready to progress' criteria and, through it, their progress in mathematics. Daily, teachers assess progress and misconceptions throughout and after a lesson via their marking. To embed the learning, topics are revisited and knowledge checked after 3 weeks with ‘End of Unit checks’ to encourage retrieval of concepts and information, and then visited again later in the term through another assessment. Twice a year, all children from Years 1 - 5 carry out a nationally standardised assessment. Through these measures, we hope to interrupt the forgetting and move the learning into ‘long term storage’ so that is accessible in future months and years as children encounter more challenging maths.
Children are formally assessed in Maths in Reception through Baseline and Early Learning Goals, Year 2 teacher assessments and Year 6 SATs. In Year 4, children complete the online Multiplication Tables Check. These results are submitted and analysed by senior staff to identify trends, and individuals who may require further support.
If further support is required, we use a variety of materials and programmes including intervention programmes such as 'Success @ Arithmetic,' ‘First Class @ Number’ and one to one and small group support focusing on ‘catch up’ interventions. These interventions are delivered by skilled Teaching Assistants or senior staff. Some of these intervention groups take place outside of the school day through our Early Birds programme and via Third Space Learning one to one tuition. Since September 2021, Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 are participating in the ‘Mastering Number’ programme via the NCETM to support our youngest children in embedding key skills which may not have been embedded due to the pandemic.
We have a Primary Maths Mastery Specialist teacher at the school who ensures that our children's maths lessons are forward-thinking in design and have a high impact on outcomes. She works closely with teachers to ensure excellent subject knowledge at the heart of quality teaching.