At Featherstone Academy we follow the National Curriculum for Maths, using the Maths Mastery approach to teaching. Mastery of mathematics is something that we want all pupils to acquire and develop throughout their school lives, and beyond.
Mastering maths means acquiring a deep, long-term, secure and adaptable understanding of the subject. The emphasis moved away from blindly following rules (remember borrowing one from the next column and paying back?) towards techniques which enable children to understand. At any one point in a pupil’s journey through school, achieving mastery is taken to mean acquiring a solid enough understanding of the maths that’s been taught to enable him/her move on to apply their learning in lots of different contexts and in other subject areas.
Since mastery is what we want pupils to acquire, we use the phrase ‘teaching for mastery’ to describe our classroom practice and organisation that combine to give pupils the best chances of mastering mathematics.
The National Curriculum for mathematics aims to ensure that all children:
- Become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics, including through varied and frequent practice with increasingly complex problems over time, so that children have conceptual understanding and are able to recall and apply their knowledge rapidly and accurately
- Reason mathematically by following a line of enquiry, conjecturing relationships and generalisations, and developing an argument, justification or proof using mathematical language
- Can solve problems by applying their mathematics to a variety of routine and non-routine problems with increasing sophistication, including breaking down problems into a series of simpler steps and persevering in seeking solutions.
At Featherstone Academy, we want all children to be able to see mathematics as an interconnected subject and be able to make connections across mathematical ideas to develop fluency, mathematical reasoning and competence in solving increasingly sophisticated problems. We want our children to apply their mathematical knowledge to science and other subjects.
The expectation in the National Curriculum is that the majority of children will move through the programmes of study at broadly the same pace. However, decisions about when to progress should always be based on the security of children’s’ understanding and their readiness to progress to the next stage. Children who grasp concepts rapidly should be challenged through being offered rich and sophisticated problems before any acceleration through new content. Those who are not sufficiently fluent with earlier material should consolidate their understanding, including, through additional practice, before moving on,
Helpful hints by year group