Everything begins with concrete exploration, based on real-life situations and experiences, helping to create a context of learning children can understand. Every lesson is planned with small, clear careful steps to develop children's mathematical understanding and in turn develop their mental calculation skills. Children are taught how they can represent their learning pictorially and this supports their development of formal written methods.
This process of concrete, pictorial and abstract learning is reflected in our Calculations policy which has been developed to reflect the 2014 Maths curriculum and explains, with examples, the calculation methods taught in each year group for all four operations (+-÷x).
The National Curriculum focuses on 3 key areas; Fluency, Reasoning and Problem Solving.
Fluency – becoming fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics, through frequent practice to aid children's development of their conceptual understanding, recall and be able to apply their knowledge.
Reasoning- making conjectures, investigating and representing findings and being able to explain and justify their ideas.
Problem solving – applying their mathematical understanding to a variety of problems.
Cross curricular links are developed whenever possible, especially in science and ICT and problem solving sessions are woven throughout each term’s lessons.
Mastery in Mathematics:
Since mastery is what we want pupils to acquire (or go on acquiring), rather than teachers to demonstrate, we use the phrase ‘teaching for mastery’ to describe the range of elements of classroom practice and school organisation that combine to give pupils the best chances of mastering mathematics.
And mastering maths means acquiring a deep, long-term, secure and adaptable understanding of the subject. At any one point in a pupil’s journey through school, achieving mastery is taken to mean acquiring a solid enough understanding of the maths that’s been taught to enable him/her move on to more advanced material.
From National Centre for Excellence in the Teaching of Mathematics