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Rationale for the teaching of Maths


Mathematics is essential for everyday life and understanding our world. It enables the development of pupils’ ability to solve puzzles and real life problems. Pupils learn to think creatively and make links between mathematical concepts through exploring patterns in the number system, shape, measures and statistics. They develop the skills, knowledge and efficient methods of calculation necessary to support their economic future and problem solving in life. 


How we teach and learn Maths at St Anne’s


Mathematics is taught on a daily basis throughout our school. Early mathematics begins in the Early Years Foundation Stage, through a very practical, hands-on approach, rich in vocabulary and child-led exploration. Opportunities to develop pupil’s understanding of number, shape, space & measure are woven through all aspects of the EYFS curriculum. Children are continuously encouraged to count, identify shapes, measure, make comparisons and to link mathematics to the environment around them. Across key stage one and two, teaching methods include discussions between teacher and pupil, discussions between pupils, practical work, group activities, individual work, practice of basic skills and routines and investigative work. Each lesson begins with oral work and mental calculation; this is followed by the main teaching input and pupil activities. The main teaching points are consolidated in a plenary session in which pupils are given time to review, reflect, discuss and evaluate their work and learning. 


Planning includes learning objectives, what the teacher will be teaching and modelling – using ‘I do, We do, You do’ strategy, key vocabulary, effective hinge questions and differentiated activities.  Before the start of each unit, the teachers assess prior learning and knowledge through entry and exit tasks. This informs the planning of the unit to ensure misconceptions are dealt with at the start and the teaching is pitched appropriately.


At St. Anne’s we ensure challenge for all children through our 'Try it, Use it, Prove it' activities. ‘Try it’ tasks aim to improve the children's understanding of the skill, recalling key facts accurately through frequent and varied practice. 'Use it' tasks develop justification or proof using mathematical language and challenge the children to draw on the skills they have achieved in the 'Try it' tasks. 'Prove it' tasks require the children to solve questions by applying their mathematical skills to a variety of problems in different contexts.


Planning, where possible, should involve real life contexts for Maths, where children are reasoning and problem solving with a purpose in mind. Class teachers will regularly plan for opportunities for children to apply their Maths skills to different problems within Maths lessons and across the curriculum.  This will also allow children to revisit, practise and consolidate different Maths skills and apply them in different contexts.


Mathematical Vocabulary


At St. Anne’s we expect children to clearly articulate their ideas and thoughts and reasoning processes, enabling deeper learning. We expect children to make some mistakes, analyse them and learn from them, justifying and explaining as they do this.


The Curriculum for Maths reflects the importance of spoken language in pupils’ development of the subject.  The quality and variety of language that pupils hear and speak are key factors in developing their mathematical vocabulary and presenting a mathematical justification, argument or proof. Vocabulary is explicitly taught at the start of each unit of learning.  All pupils have access to the vocabulary as it is displayed on the working wall, in books/on tables.  The definition and application of the vocabulary is modelled continuously throughout the unit of work.  There is a high expectation for pupils to use, model and apply the vocabulary in their verbal and written reasoning.


How we celebrate our Maths learning


Teachers monitor and assess children throughout the lesson using hinge questioning, and through marking their work, identifying any misconceptions which need to be addressed. Entry and Exit tasks provide an effective form of assessment and shows the progression made by each pupil. Teachers use these assessments alongside teacher judgement within a unit to inform planning, assessment and address gaps in knowledge.


At St. Anne’s we celebrate fantastic Maths learning by awarding a ‘mathematician of the week’ certificate during our assemblies. This is a chance to praise members of each class and reflect on learning throughout the week. Excellent examples of Maths work are also shared and displayed in the Marvellous Maths Display for children, parents and visitors to see in school.  


Times Tables Rockstars is a fantastic online game and app which St. Anne’s subscribes to. Each child is given their own personal login which enables them to independently practice their times tables, in a really fun way. By simply practising their tables, children earn 'coins' which they can spend on kitting out their avatar with the latest rockstar must-haves.




The study of Maths enables children to make sense of the world around them and we strive to enable each of our children to explore the connections between their Mathematical skills and every-day life. Children are provided with opportunities to use their Mathematical skills in real life contexts, applying and exploring the skills required in solving various problems.


Problem solving skills and teamwork are fundamental to mathematics through creative thinking, discussion, explaining and presenting ideas. Children are always encouraged to explain concepts to each other and support each other in their learning. In this manner, children realise their own strengths and feel a sense of achievement which often boosts confidence.