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The curriculum follows a mastery approach. In essence, teaching for mastery is a philosophy with an overarching principle that all learners are expected to reach the same high standard of mathematic proficiency, and are effectively supported to do so.

For this reason, pupils are in mixed ability groups in order to uphold a high standard of mathematical aptitude. Sets exist where necessary.

A key whole school focus has been to develop beyond a reliance on rote memorisation of rules. Instead, we strive to teach for a method that promotes understanding in order to boost the application of mathematical concepts in unfamiliar contexts and therefore reduce mathematics anxiety in primary school children (Newstead, 1995-1998). Daily ‘Maths Meetings’ are embedded within the school timetable as an element of reviewing key mathematical concepts. ‘Maths Meetings’ helps to link together the mathematical relationship between separate learning steps and allows pupils to opportunity to apply their knowledge in varied problems.  In activating our pupils’ schema of prior learning by recalling what we’ve taught them previously, this will maximise the chance of them integrating new learning into existing schemata, rather than remembering content as something in isolation.

Teaching for mastery is an approach that involves the following key elements:

  • Identifying what pupils already know about a certain topic
  • Planning the next logical steps in learning
  • Teaching and assessing in a continual cycle throughout a unit
  • Providing ample opportunities for pupils to develop mathematical fluency and learn about topics in depth.
  • Ensuring a high degree of success for all pupils before moving on to new learning.
Philosophy and overarching principles in Maths
  • Collaboration supports mastery

Children learn through collaboration. The opportunity to work with others supports understanding and encourages the development of problem solving and reasoning skills.

  • Depth is prioritised over breadth

Each topic is explored in greater depth and in a variety of ways; a topic is only considered complete when the children’s knowledge is secure.

  • All children move on together

Children progress through learning at broadly the same pace, with opportunities for faster graspers to deepen their understanding.

  • Focus on understanding

The ability to solve a calculation is not enough; children must be able to demonstrate and articulate their understanding of the mathematical concept.

Key features of the Maths curriculum:
  • Coherent, carefully sequenced learning steps: the structure and essence of teaching for mastery is a cycle of assessing and teaching, assessing and teaching. The following list reflects the stages of delivering an instructional sequence: Assess the prerequisites, teach any necessary prerequisites, teach the learning steps, intervene for pupils who need support, assess the unit. Each part of the instructional sequence is a series of linked learning steps that supports the children accessing and progressing mathematically.
  • Language, talk and articulation: Language is the stuff of thought. Without having a word for something, it can be very difficult to think about it. Stem sentences are used consistently across all phases. It supports in drawing pupil’s attention to particular aspects of the learning and encourages accurate maths talk. Pupils are given opportunities to talk to articulate their thinking and reasoning (I say, you say, we say/ pupil to teacher/ pupil to pupil talk.
  • ‘Ping Pong’ instructional model: there is a high level of back and forth between teacher instruction and pupil activities. This back and forth provides detail, scaffolding for all to achieve, small steps and a clear and coherent journey through the mathematics
  • Conceptual variation: the mathematical concept is presented in a variety of ways so children are able to discern the essential features.
  • Multiple representations: a variety of manipulative and pictorial representations have been used to explain the mathematical concept.
  • Procedural variation: questions have been chosen with care to demonstrate a particular concept, ensuring that calculations are more than simply finding an answer, but about understanding patterns and concepts too.
  • Depth for all: every child in the lesson has the opportunity to apply their key learning through extension, application, reasoning or problem solving (or a combination).
  • Scaffolding: support is available for those who need it (scaffolding through support, scaffolding through time, scaffolding though activity).


  • Talk tasks in groups or pairs to develop understanding
  • Activity design and learning steps encourage working with peers to problem solve and reason using manipulatives or talk
  • Transition time between activities used for mathematical chants, rhymes or songs
  • Accurate and appropriate vocabulary is used by all
  • Opportunities are created for pupils to talk to each other purposefully about Mathematics
  • Stem sentences are available and referred to in order to provide clarity on how to speak mathematically
  • There is an opportunity to develop fluency and automaticity
  • Conceptual and procedural variation allows pupils to apply their mathematical knowledge in different contexts
  • Children have the opportunity to go from specific examples of concepts to developing these into general rules


Subject Documents Date  
Maths Depth Activity Examples 24th Aug 2023 Download
Maths Unit Overview Addition 24th Aug 2023 Download
Maths Unit Overview Fractions Decimals and Percentages 24th Aug 2023 Download
Maths Unit Overview Geometry 24th Aug 2023 Download
Maths Unit Overview Measurement Year 1 24th Aug 2023 Download
Maths Unit Overview Money 24th Aug 2023 Download
Maths Unit Overview Multiplication and Division 24th Aug 2023 Download
Maths Unit Overview Place Value 24th Aug 2023 Download
Maths Unit Overview Statistics 24th Aug 2023 Download
Maths Unit Overview Subtraction 24th Aug 2023 Download
Maths Unit Overview Time 24th Aug 2023 Download
Maths Yearly Overview 2023 24 24th Aug 2023 Download