Goat Lees Maths Curriculum

Mastery approach in teaching Mathematics at Goat Lees Primary School

At Goat Lees, we take the “Teaching for Mastery Approach.” This means that we want our children to be confident and competent Mathematicians who enjoy the subject and crave challenging Maths questions.  

Our Intent 

This approach means our pupils should leave our school with a deep, long-term, secure and adaptable understanding of Maths. This way of learning is something that we want pupils to acquire, so a ‘mastery Maths curriculum’ aims to help pupils, over time, acquire mastery of the subject.

There a number of elements which will help children develop mastery of Maths; 

• fluency (rapid and accurate recall and application of facts and concepts) 

• a growing confidence to reason mathematically 

• the ability to apply Maths to solve problems and to test hypotheses 

Mastery of Maths, is a tool for life, and immeasurably more valuable than the short-term ability to answer questions in tests or exams. 

Our Implementation 

Children in each class will face the same curriculum targets as one other, regardless of ability. Teachers and teaching assistants will ensure that pupils can work through these objectives, by differentiating with support, resources and the pace of their learning.  

In all classes, teachers will aim to ensure that pupils have a secure understanding of number and the number concepts that are essential to them learning new curriculum topics. For example, before learning how to use times tables, in Year 2, pupils will firstly make groups and then look at numbers arranged in rows and columns, so that they understand how multiplication works.  

Our teachers utilise a “ping-pong” method to base their planning and delivery. This means the whole class will work in small chunks through their arithmetic and reasoning questions that day. This allows pupils and teachers to discuss their ideas and approaches with arithmetic methods and solving reasoning questions, giving them greater confidence and vocabulary to complete these. Teachers will share skills and knowledge, then allow pupils time to discuss their ideas, before answering written questions.  

The White Rose Maths scheme provides the basis of our curriculum planning and our termly plans. Teachers may use resources from other sources where they feel these will better-suit the needs of their class. Pupils and teachers can use the Goat Lees Maths Curriculum planning sheets to see which curriculum objectives are coming up that term, and they review what they have learnt as well. This will help pupils to see all of the amazing skills and knowledge they have taken on. Meanwhile, teaching staff will be able to review with their pupils, what the class have achieved and which areas of Maths require more attention in the next term.  

The Numbots and Times Tables Rockstar Apps and websites are used by our pupils in school and at home, to provide our children with an enjoyable way to practise and embed their key Maths skills on their favourite devices. Each month, the class with the most practice on Numbots and the class with the most practice on TTRockstars will receive a trophy and rewards for their efforts. 

This year, to tackle gaps in key arithmetic skills, our pupils will have “Arithmetic Fridays” sessions where the whole class will answer arithmetic questions from all areas of the Maths curriculum. This will help them to practise skills they are learning each week, revise previously learnt skills and learn new skills that are forthcoming in the main Maths curriculum. Teachers may also use repeated practice of one key skill or reasoning questions as extensions for confident Mathematicians.  

Our Impact 

Our thoroughly planned Maths curriculum ensures that our children have a secure understanding of number facts, they are confident when taking on arithmetic and reasoning questions and they have a secure Maths skillset which they can use throughout their lives. These skills are also useful to them in other subjects where arithmetic, statistics and other skills are so important. Pupils enjoy their Maths learning and they have greater ownership over their Maths learning as they discuss and assess their own abilities regularly. Furthermore, our skilled teaching staff will ensure that their pupils make as much progress as possible. In spite of school closures in recent years, we truly believe that we can help our pupils to love Maths, make good progress and be more confident and competent in this key curriculum subject.  

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