Maths at Nafferton
At Nafferton Primary we believe in a mathematical journey from Foundation to Year 6 which allows children to build the knowledge, skills and understanding they develop from one year to the next. We see Maths as an essential, basic necessity in everyday life which we must make every effort to instil and reinforce in our children to make the next generation mathematically literate for their future lives.
So how do we do it?
At the root of our planning is the White Rose Scheme of Work. This runs throughout the school with threads, stem sentences, methods, models and vocabulary for continuity across each of the units taught as they spiral through the year groups. The blocks of work in place value, the four operations, measures, statistics and geometry are broken down in to ‘small steps’ which are paced out over several weeks.
Over recent years we have found and discussed that the pacing set out does not allow staff to give units fair coverage, and makes teaching mixed-age classes particularly difficult. Therefore, we have taken three major steps to address this in our planning:
- White Rose Planning – An adapted version
Firstly, we have adapted the White Rose Long Term Plan to rearrange some units in to different terms and to balance out the weeks given throughout the year a little better. It also means that units now line up better in mixed age classes so similar units can be taught at the same time.
- Morning Maths
Secondly, we use daily Morning Maths sessions to recap and reinforce objectives which have already been delivered. This allows children the opportunity to seek additional support and guidance after the class has moved on, often on a more 1:1 basis within the classroom, to really get to grips with key steps within each unit.
- Topic Maths
Thirdly, we have introduced ‘Topic Maths’ sessions. Once, every week children are exposed to short, sharp and snappy sessions based on Statistics, Geometry or Time. These sessions are rotated weekly so that children are regularly ‘topped up’ in 15-minute sessions to allow a balance across all three areas.
A Mastery Approach
By following a mastery approach in Maths, we allow children to be included in all lessons and be taught alongside their peers, regardless of perceived ability and expected understanding. All children are treated as having the same starting point when learning in new areas of Maths, to then be challenged or supported accordingly once teachers have led them towards their first objectives.
Supporting our curriculum.
Alongside our Maths curriculum in school, we implement a KIRFs programme throughout the school. Key Instant Recall Facts (KIRFs) are the key building blocks which, given proper practice and learning, allow children to perform quick mental maths to form the basis of their working out across a wide range of areas within the maths curriculum. Key skills such as number bonds, times table facts and key information packs (kg, g, L, ml, minutes, hours, etc.) have a huge baring on the ways in which children approach reasoning and problem-solving activities. Our KIRFs programme were evaluated and revised in 2022 to introduce KIRFs for Foundation and to bring others in line with higher and deeper expectations across other year groups whilst also ensuring they are lined up to be covered after they appropriate units have been delivered according to the adapted White Rose Long Term Plan.
Assessment and Data
Across themes and at the end of each teaching block, teachers make professional judgements about how well children have developed their understanding within them. Formative assessments combined with day-to-day observations and classwork allow teaching staff to make these judgements.
A physical process
We believe in allowing younger children to ‘get their hands on Maths’ by using a wide range of practical equipment. Children often find making links to their mathematical knowledge much easier using equipment such as base-10 (or Deins apparatus), Numicon, practical number lines, clocks, shapes and measuring equipment. As they get older, we encourage children to visualise the equipment they have experienced using in the past to help them to recall the links they have made before. These visualisations are essential as the equipment will not always be on hand to pick up and use!