Maths is a dynamic and exciting subject at St. Michael’s. Problem-solving, reasoning and investigative skills are at the heart of our mathematics teaching.
Through excellent teaching, opportunities for real-life problem solving and extra-curricular enrichment activities, our children develop not only a deep understanding of maths, but a passion for the subject as well.
We aim to ensure that all children:
- become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics
- have the ability to recall and apply knowledge rapidly and accurately to a range of mathematical problems and situations
- reason mathematically using appropriate mathematical language
- solve problems by applying their mathematics to a variety of routine and non-routine problems with increasing sophistication.
Pupils are encouraged to discover solutions for themselves in order to learn to work systematically and to develop their ability to think logically. This also develops their resilience in the face of difficulty.
Our children welcome a challenge and we promote the attitude that we should all expect to struggle at some point in maths. Reasoning is essential to understanding, so pupil talk is encouraged as this allows children to develop and clarify their mathematical thinking.
At every stage children’s mathematical vocabulary is developed in order to aid understanding.
Early Years examples: Developing a firm understanding of fundamental concepts through counting, sorting, matching objects and number songs. Understanding shape and space through physical activities. The focus is on really understanding concrete concepts, to prepare them for the pictorial and abstract concepts in later years.
Key Stage 1 examples: Develop confidence and mental fluency with place value, whole numbers and counting. This should involve working with numbers, words and the four operations. The children are supported with concrete and visual resources in order to develop their understanding.
Key Stage 2 examples: Become increasingly fluent with place value, whole numbers and the four operations. Children also continue learning their essential number facts. This should ensure that pupils have effective written and mental methods and perform calculations accurately.
The chief focus of mathematics teaching in key stage 2 is to ensure that pupils extend their understanding of the number system and place value to include larger integers. As a result, children develop connections between multiplication and division with fractions, decimals, percentages and ratio. By the end of year 6, pupils should be fluent in written methods for all four operations, including long multiplication and division, and in working with fractions, decimals and percentages.
Children also enjoy a weekly “Active Maths” lesson. This uses fun and energetic exercises to give children a fresh way to engage with the subject, boosting mental maths skills. This is one way to make the study of maths fun and it also boosts their confidence and makes them happier and healthier.
We run a Maths Club for children. This provides a weekly forum where children can explore and extend their abilities in maths in a fun way through activities done both on their own and in pairs and groups.
“The way this school teaches maths is inventive and makes the things we learn stick in our mind”