At Redhill Primary School, we plan and deliver our creative Maths lessons in line with the National Curriculum. We aim to ensure that all children, upon leaving Redhill, are fluent in the fundamental skills of mathematics and can solve problems in a multitude of contexts whilst also possessing the ability to reason about their findings.
At Redhill, our aim is for all children to enjoy Maths and not feel fearful of it. We have several elements of Mathematics - from maths meetings to Tackling Tables – so that children with differing learner styles access maths in their own way. The idea is to try and reduce the pressure of formal maths lessons so that children enjoy the learning without realising that they are actually using maths skills. During maths lessons, we also model and encourage mistakes and thinking out loud – we all make errors, it is how we learn from them that counts; this is why we use a purple pen to correct mistakes and not rubbers.
According to Mathematics Mastery (2017), “a Maths Meeting should cover several curricular areas, broken down into short segments; each segment should take approximately 2–3 minutes. Each meeting should start with a song, rhyme, poem or chant, to ensure full participation and enjoyment.” Tackling Tables allows children to see relationships between numbers and is a “highly effective way to help them to achieve automatic and accurate retrieval of multiplication tables and the corresponding division facts.”
Although we follow the White Rose scheme as a skeleton, we have personalised it to suit the needs of the children at Redhill. We have taken into consideration the units missed during remote learning and periods of isolation and have spent some time revisiting those. We do not necessarily follow the lesson structure of White Rose and instead decided to introduce a ‘fluency skills practice’ section to our lessons as we felt that our learners sometimes need the opportunity to just practise the skill as simple questions before moving on to using the skill on context. We have found that these 5 or 6 questions allow the children to build confidence and iron out any misconceptions right at the start of the lesson.
We have an overview of units readily available to all staff so that they can see coverage in each year group. This is accompanied by ‘small-steps’ overview to guide teachers for their sequence of learning.
As a school, we have found that schemes of learning do not necessarily suit our learners and so a bespoke curriculum was needed. White Rose was found to be the most adaptable resource to use when designing our ‘Redhill Curriculum’ as teachers were familiar with it and it allowed us to pick and choose the relevant elements.
White Rose is aimed at encouraging “a culture that produces strong, secure learning and real progress.” The way that Redhill implements this is by working in very small steps – sometimes smaller than White Rose and embedding learning through skills practice and Maths Meetings.
In an ideal world, all learners would progress at the same pace and level but, at Redhill, for some of our SEND learners, this is not entirely possible. Where possible and relevant, all learners access the age appropriate curriculum with minimal differentiation. However, it was found that some SEND learners could not access all areas of the curriculum and so a bespoke SEND provision has been created. SEND learners practise their fine motor skills, number formation, knowledge of shape and calendar maths before moving onto progressive skills in very small steps.
Concrete resources are encouraged and should be available for ALL learners of all abilities and used alongside pictorial and abstract strategies. Even the most able learners should be able to explain their thought processes using concrete resources and they are accessible to all in every classroom.
Learners use Tackling Tables as either a card game or online game where they can try and beat their best score and receive certificates as awards. They put this practice to use in their daily FAST Maths sessions – 5 minutes of times tables at the beginning of each maths lesson. In KS1, FAST Maths is used to practise number formation, number bonds and addition.
Maths meetings are often regarded as the children’s favourite lessons as they think they are doing a quiz and there is little pressure on them to write down the correct answer and get it wrong. Teachers provide opportunities to ask quickfire questions about a range of skills whilst quickly assessing which children need rapid intervention. At Redhill, we use Maths Meetings to cover skills that were ‘missed’ during periods of remote learning and isolation as well as revising skills that have already been taught. Across the school, they follow a similar structure of calendar maths, place value, 4 operations, geometry and then personalised skills needed for that class. During the Summer Term, focus should be on revising key skills for whole class to allow all children to access content from age appropriate objectives. This also provides opportunity to embed learning and truly see whether children have ‘mastered’ a skill several weeks or months after having been taught it.
Our aim at Redhill is to embed our values into every child to produce life-long learners. In particular for maths, we aim to embed Love Learning, Ambition and Never Giving Up and celebrate maths whilst displaying our enjoyment of it. We allow our mathematicians to feel empowered by their knowledge and produce children who become adults that enjoy maths and do not feel fearful of it.
All pupils make progress in Maths, measured by their personalised journey. From SEND to Greater Depth, we have high expectations of the children at Redhill and, in turn, they are confident and eloquent to talk about their learning journey.
We use NFER three times per year to assess our children’s attainment in Mathematics. This data is then analysed against prior attainment and progress is monitored. Where a child has not made sufficient progress, in line with prior attainment, they are identified as ‘Target Children’ for the following term. Targeted, personalised interventions are carried out and these children are then expected to ‘get back on track’.
Our latest KS2 SATs results (2019) show that 80% of our children achieved ARE+ combined, compared to 76% as a National Average.