By the time they leave Northgate, we aim for our children to:
Be able to apply their mathematical knowledge and skills to real-life scenarios that they will encounter in life beyond school. They will be confident and competent problem-solvers and will demonstrate resilience when tackling any mathematical challenge.
At Northgate, we follow the aims of the new National Curriculum. These are to develop fluency in the fundamentals of mathematics, to reason mathematically and to solve problems by applying mathematical knowledge to a variety of different contexts.
Our Mathematics teaching aims to equip pupils with these skills by embedding varied fluency, reasoning and problem-solving into Maths lessons across the school, from Year 1 to Year 6. Pupils are taught strategies to develop accuracy and logical and systematic thinking, as well as being taught which methods are most efficient, once understanding is secure. Children are given autonomy in their learning to choose which methods best suits them, which builds independence and confidence in mathematics.
In addition to a daily Maths lesson, one short Number Sense session is taught weekly. This focuses on building children’s quick recall of basic number facts through the explicit teaching of mental methods, and connections between the number system.
Our approach also uses concrete manipulatives (such as dienes, multi-link cubes and place value counters), pictorial representations (pictures representing mathematical concepts, including bar models and part-whole models) and more abstract approaches (written calculations). This structured support, combined with our high expectations, ensures that children develop a deep conceptual understanding of the fundamentals of mathematics, which they can then apply to a variety of contexts across the curriculum, in subjects such as Science, Computing and Design and Technology, and in real-life situations.
We aim to build our pupils’ resilience and problem-solving skills in mathematics through using resources such as Jo Boaler’s Weeks of Inspirational Maths and regular discussions and reminders about Growth Mindset. We also encourage our teachers to include stand-alone problem-solving lessons at least once per month, to provide children with the opportunity to develop problem-solving strategies and familiarity with tackling mathematical problems out of context. Children are encouraged to work in partners or part of a group to develop mathematical talk and use of mathematical vocabulary, which is consistently used and modelled by teachers and support staff across the school.