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Leiston Primary School


“Mistakes and challenges are the best time for your brain to grow.” Jo Boaler


Intent - What do we want our children to learn?


Maths is a skill we use on a daily basis and is an essential part of everyday life. Mathematics teaches children how to make sense of the world around them through developing their ability to calculate fluently, reason and solve problems.


It enables children to understand relationships and patterns in the world around them. Through their growing knowledge and understanding, children learn to appreciate how Maths is essential to everyday life, critical to science, technology and engineering, and necessary for financial literacy and most forms of employment. Our aim is to develop confidence and competence within all areas of Maths, and have an understanding of the importance of Maths in everyday life.


We try to achieve this through fun, engaging and challenging activities, with plenty of opportunities to use and apply the growing skills, knowledge and understanding that the children are obtaining. We help them to develop their understanding and use of Maths language and hopefully develop a real enjoyment and lifelong love of Maths.


Our aims when teaching mathematics are:

  • To teach the children to see themselves as Mathematicians, think like Mathematicians and develop a growth mindset that ensures effective learning;  
  • To have a fluent knowledge and recall of number facts and the number system developing a good ‘Number Sense’;
  • To broaden and deepen children’s conceptual knowledge, skills and understanding in maths, alongside developing their procedural fluency on a journey towards mastery;  
  • To have a fluent understanding of performing written and mental calculations and mathematical techniques and to embrace the value of learning from mistakes and to think independently and to persevere when faced with challenges;
  • To promote confidence and competence with understanding and using numbers and the number system, developing good ‘number sense;’  
  • To equip children with the ability to reason, generalise and make sense of solutions;  
  • To develop the ability to solve problems through decision-making and reasoning in a wide range of contexts, and in other curriculum areas;  
  • To develop children’s ability to move between concrete, pictorial and abstract representations fluently and confidently;  
  • To make connections within Maths as well as understanding the importance of mathematics in, and making connections with, other curriculum areas (including STEM subjects) and everyday life;  
  • To promote enjoyment and curiosity in Maths through practical activity, exploration, investigation and discussion;  
  • To develop a practical understanding of the ways in which information is gathered and presented;  
  • To explore features of shape and space, and develop measuring skills in a range of contexts;  
  • To enable children to select and use a range of mathematical tools effectively;  
  • To equip children with a wide range of mathematical vocabulary and the mathematical language needed to understand problems and explain their methods and reasoning.


Implementation - How are we going to achieve our intent?


The Mathematics curriculum is led and overseen by the Mathematics Subject Leader. A regular programme of monitoring, evaluation and staff support takes place along with the celebration and sharing of good practice. The school understands that it is crucial for all staff working with pupils to have both good subject knowledge and good pedagogical knowledge in order to help pupils make the best progress possible in Maths. There is an ongoing commitment to evolve and improve the quality and impact of Mathematics on offer to all children. 


In accordance with our ‘Mastery’ approach there are no fixed ‘sets’ or in-class groupings used. During our daily lessons we encourage children to ask as well as answer mathematical questions. Wherever possible, we provide meaningful contexts and encourage the children to apply their learning to everyday situations. At all times the policy aims/intention points are the drivers behind the planning and delivery of lessons.


The school understands that children learn in different ways, and so uses a variety of teaching styles in mathematics, adapting to the needs of the children as necessary and appropriate. During our daily lessons we encourage children to ask as well as answer mathematical questions. We develop their ability to independently select and use appropriate concrete apparatus to support their conceptual understanding and build procedural fluency as part of the ‘Concrete-Pictorial-Abstract (CPA) approach. As such, children have the opportunity to independently access and use a wide range of resources, such as bead frames, bead strings, number lines, Dienes/ Base 10 apparatus, place value counters, Numicon, multilink, place value cards, Cuisenaire rods and other small apparatus to support their work. We develop the children’s ability to represent problems using visualisation skills, jottings and pictorial representations such as Empty Number Lines, the ‘Bar Model’, 100 squares and their own ideas. Mathematical dictionaries are available and their use is encouraged whenever and wherever appropriate. Wherever possible, we provide meaningful contexts and encourage the children to apply their learning to everyday situations. 


We aim for children to achieve mastery of the key areas and domains in Maths, maximising attainment and progress for all pupils. We believe that conceptual fluency and procedural fluency should be developed in tandem, with neither being at the expense of the other, however, we recognize and understand that they do not always necessarily develop at the same time or rate. There are times when one will develop in advance of the other- this is fine so long as the other is not forgotten and continues to develop. The end goal is mastery of both elements. 


From Reception to Year 6, we follow the White Rose scheme which supports children in learning the

fundamentals behind the meanings of numbers and exploring other key mathematical areas, however, our maths curriculum is also supported with resources from a variety of other sources. Our expectation is that the majority of pupils will move through the programmes of study at broadly the same pace. However, decisions about when to progress will always be based on the security of pupils’ understanding and their readiness to progress to the next stage. Pupils who grasp concepts rapidly will be challenged through being offered rich and sophisticated problems before any acceleration through new content. Those who are not sufficiently fluent receive additional ‘scaffolded’ support to consolidate their understanding, including through additional practice, before moving on. In addition, we also encourage the use of peer-support pairs as well as guided or targeted input from the teacher, teaching assistants and learning support assistants based on ongoing formative assessment.

Impact - What will it look like when we achieve our intent?


Monitoring the standards of children’s work and of the quality of teaching in Mathematics is the responsibility of the subject leader. Monitoring may include such activities as reviewing samples of children’s work, undertaking lesson observations of mathematics teaching across the school, analysing planning and carrying out pupil-perception discussions. A named member of the school’s governing body is assigned to oversee the teaching of Maths. The Mathematics subject leader keeps a subject portfolio up to date. This provides a picture of Mathematics across the school.


"Maths used to be one of my worst subjects, but now it is one of my favourites because I love all of the challenges and activities," Millie (Year 6).

Useful Websites

Link for Multiplication Master