Maths Curriculum - Purpose of study
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.
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 have conceptual understanding and are able to recall and apply their knowledge rapidly and accurately to problems
- 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.
Maths No Problem
At St Joseph's we follow a programme called Maths No Problem.
The Maths — No Problem! Primary Maths Series has been created using the principles of Singapore Mathematics and is fully aligned to the 2014 English National Curriculum. The Programme provides all the elements that teachers need to teach maths mastery with confidence. It promotes the belief that every child can master an understanding and love of maths with the right kind of teaching and support.
Their mission is 'to improve the standard of maths education by providing world-class textbooks, teaching resources and professional development based on the transformational teaching methods developed in Singapore.'
Teaching Maths for Mastery
The whole class works through the programmes of study at the same pace with ample time on each topic before moving on. Ideas are revisited at higher levels as the curriculum spirals through the years.
Tasks and activities are designed to be easy for pupils to enter while still containing challenging components. For advanced learners, there are non-routine questions for pupils to develop their higher-order thinking skills.
Lessons and activities are designed to be taught using problem-solving approaches to encourage pupils’ higher-level thinking. The focus is on working with pupils’ core competencies, building on what they know to develop their relational understanding.
Concrete Pictorial Abstract (CPA) Approach
Based on Jerome Bruner’s work, pupils learn new concepts initially using concrete examples, such as counters, then progress to drawing pictorial representations before finally using more abstract symbols, such as the equals sign.
The questions and examples are carefully varied to encourage pupils to think about the maths. Rather than provide mechanical repetition, the examples are designed to deepen pupils’ understanding and reveal misconceptions.
Times Table Rockstars
St Joseph's Catholic Primary School subscribes to Times Table Rock Stars. This is a system that the children use to practise the instant recall of their multiplication and division facts.
When it comes to times tables, speed AND accuracy are important – the more facts a child remembers, the easier it is for them to complete harder calculations. Times Table Rock Stars is a fun and challenging programme designed to help children master the times tables. To be a Times Table Rock Star they need to answer any multiplication fact up to 12×12 in less than 3 seconds!
Research shows that daily practise is the best strategy for children to learn these important facts. Short bursts of daily practise are much more effective than spending hours once a week. Parental support is critical in this area. For children to be fully motivated and for them to get the best out of the practice, they need an adult's help. Without a Parent's praise and reminders, without sitting down together or checking their work, practising times tables will not feel important.
Each class or group within a class will be set a schedule of times tables to work on by their teacher. The quicker a child can answer a times tables question, the higher their Rock Status.
≤ 1 sec/qu = Rock Hero
≤ 2 secs/qu = Rock Legend
≤ 3 secs/qu = Rock Star
≤ 4 secs = Headliner
≤ 5 secs/qu = Support Act
≤ 6 secs/qu = Breakthrough Artist
≤ 7 secs/qu = Unsigned Act
≤ 8 secs/qu = Gigger
≤ 9 secs/qu = Busker
≤ 10 secs/qu = Garage Rocker
> 10 secs/qu = Wannabe
Throughout the year we have Math Workshops for our parents to help gain a better understanding of the curriculum for their child's year but also how the children learn maths. Too often we hear parents say: 'Oh, that's not how I did it in my day!' or 'I was never any good at maths at school.' Our workshops are led by the children working through examples of problems using different methods and apparatus to solve them, however, staff are available to answer any questions or assist, if needed.
See link below which shows you a video created by the children to invite parents to our next workshop.