Our Approach to Teaching Mathematics
At Rushall we are on an exciting ‘Teaching for Mastery’ journey!
Our aim is for children to enjoy Mathematics and to understand the importance and relevance of it to their everyday lives. We strive to equip all children with the skills and confidence to solve a range of problems through fluency with numbers and mathematical reasoning.
During the last year we have been working closely with the Central Maths Hub and have had the pleasure of working with a team of highly experienced, passionate, talented Maths Leads. Staff at our school have been developing their own subject knowledge at Parkfields Community School in Saltley, Birmingham, and been part of a Teacher Research Group at Henry Hinde Infant School in Rugby, Warwickshire. Miss Atkins is now a Maths Mastery specialist and will be supporting 7 schools during 2019-2020.
When you come to our school, you may notice that things look a little different to the way Mathematics was taught a few years ago. The following information and images may be helpful.
A Mastery Approach
The essential idea behind mastery is that all children develop a deep understanding of mathematics built on solid foundations.
In our lessons you will see all children engaged in their learning and enjoying practical activities. High quality resources are used not only to ‘do’ the maths but to ‘show’ understanding.
With good teaching, appropriate resources, effort and a ‘can do’ attitude all children can achieve and enjoy mathematics.
The national curriculum for this subject aims to ensure that all pupils:
- Become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics
- Reason mathematically
- Solve problems by applying their mathematics
Our Mastery approach to teaching this subject, supported by the ‘Power Maths’ scheme, ensures that children do all three of these every day.
Recording our work
You will see in our pupils' books that they show the depth of their understanding using a range of different representations, e.g. the bar model, part-part-whole model, base ten manipulatives, tens frames, pictures. We also ask pupils to explain their mathematical understanding in writing using the correct mathematical vocabulary.
Sky Rocket Challenges
Something else that you will see in our books are ‘Sky Rocket’ challenges. Once children have successfully completed the questions in their workbooks and shown their understanding using a range of representations, they attempt the Sky Rocket Challenge. These are linked to the skills and knowledge they have been learning in the lesson. They are available to all children and are aimed at challenging them to show a greater depth of understanding.
We aim for all children to develop a strong sense of number. You can help with this by doing any or all of the following:
- Count with your children whenever possible, e.g. stairs as you climb them, buttons as they get dressed steps are you walk down the road, cars as you drive along. Adapt the counting to match what your child is currently working on. If you are unsure, speak to your child’s teacher.
- Look at pictures in books and talk about how many things you can see in the pictures.
- Sing songs involving numbers: Five Fat Sausages; Five Little Ducks; Three Little Monkeys; Five Little Speckled Frogs; One, Two, Buckle My Shoe; Once I caught a fish alive; Ten Green Bottles; Ten in a Bed; This Old Man.
- Play games where keeping score is essential.
- Practise writing numbers. This can be done outdoors with a paint brush and a bucket of water on a dry path/wall as well as with paper and pencil.
- Play online maths games/maths apps – ask your child’s teacher for further guidance
- Enrichment homework – our projects encourage family collaboration and participation. They are creative, open ended and often linked to our topics. They foster independent research and presentation skills.
For further details regarding homework please refer to class webpages.
Our Mathematics leads are: Miss Lianne Atkins and Mrs Helen Jones