Maths at St James Hatcham
We are passionate about the teaching and learning of maths and our school family enjoy opportunities throughout the day to learn more about the wonder of God’s creation;
We want to help our children approach maths challenges fearlessly with grit and purpose, enjoying the struggle that comes with reasoning and problem solving. We are committed to fostering a love of learning through maths; valuing questions and the contribution of all pupils in order that every individual is motivated to achieve at the very highest level academically and at the greatest depths of understanding.
‘Mathematics is a creative and highly inter-connected discipline that has been developed over centuries, providing the solution to some of history’s most intriguing problems. It is essential to everyday life, critical to science, technology and engineering, and necessary for financial literacy and most forms of employment. A high-quality mathematics education therefore provides a foundation for understanding the world, the ability to reason mathematically, an appreciation of the beauty and power of mathematics, and a sense of enjoyment and curiosity about the subject. ‘ NC 2013
The National Curriculum for mathematics (2013) aims to ensure that all pupils:
- become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics, including through varied and frequent practice with increasingly complex problems over time, so that pupils develop conceptual understanding and the ability to recall and apply 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.
Additionally at St James Hatcham we also aim to:
- teach for mastery by including number at the heart of our planning, support the ideal of depth before breadth and provide plenty of opportunities for reasoning and problem solving.
- introduce new concepts through a concrete – pictorial – abstract approach to build competency.
- work with our families to develop a mindset within our pupils that will enable them to overcome barriers to their learning. We are committed to supporting the children in working with passion and dedication who think about how they are learning, particularly when they are struggling.
- work alongside the local community to improve our pupils financial literacy through a structured programme of lessons about money. Find out more about LifeSavers here.
Our teaching approaches
We have developed a calculation policy that ensures all pupils are well equipped with progressive, efficient strategies for the 4 operations, relevant to the age and stage at which they are working. Take a look at what your child will be leaning to do this year by clicking here: Calculations Policy 2016 – 2017
In each classroom we are developing a Calculation Toolkit! This demonstrates the methods they will learn and regularly rehearse throughout the academic year, not only during units focussed on calculations.
Models and images
Maths is an interconnected subject in which our children need to be able to move with ease between different representations of mathematical ideas.
We use models and images across the school to support the understanding of these tricky mathematical concepts. Take a look at our gallery to see how our number rich environments support our budding mathematicians.
We believe strongly that when planning our lessons we must include opportunities for the pupils to use a range of different resources to help them collect visual reminders. With sustained practise they then begin to recall these from memory and rely on using them less frequently as they become more confident mathematicians. The resources we use include many of the elements in our display gallery but also incorporate;
- Manipulatives (diennes, numicon, unifix and multi link)
- Images (bead strings, fingers, counting people, number tracks, number lines, digit cards, 100 squares, place value arrow cards, counting stick, ‘empty’ number lines, dominoes)
- ICT and games (Educreation, Symphony, packs of cards, snakes and ladders)
- Everyday items (bus timetables, receipts, catalogues, scaled plans, containers, measuring devices, patterned fabrics etc.)
We are working hard with the children this year on challenging ourselves in maths! We know that creative learners who can approach problems from a number of different angles and probe deeply into their own misconceptions go on to learn at much greater depth and tackle challenges with greater confidence. The Mathematicians of the month are already demonstrating a remarkable commitment to their learning, showing that they can persevere when challenged and find creative ways to understand their problems. Well done to Kason (R), Elkanah (3), Hannah (6), Jo (4), Elizabeth (5) and Megan (2)! Our inspiration this month is the ‘mother of computing’ … Ada Lovelace.
This month we also celebrated the NSPCC’s Number Day 2018 with a whole day dedicated to maths in every class in the school! We had a ‘dress up as digits’ theme and donated £2 each to raise money for Childline. We even had a maths quiz show during assembly – Congratulations to the winning team ‘MATHS MASTERS’ with Frankin (Y6) and Megi (Y2) led by Miss Mailey! Take a look at what we got up to:
We also took part in a Ten Day Times Table Challenge – children collected sponsors for every 15 minute times table practise they did over 10 days and returned their money this week … check back next week to find out the grand total and which class raised the most for our friends at the NSPCC! Learn the PANTs song and watch the video here.
Times tables and Home Learning
In September 2017 the Government announced their intention to introduce an online multiplication and division facts check (up to 12 x 12) to be taken at the end of year 4 in the academic year 2019-2020. We believe this will be introduced in time for our current Year 3 class.
Under the current National Curriculum, children will learn all their times tables and division facts by the end of Year 4. We will introduce times tables to the children progressively, in the same way as other areas of maths and will focus in the first instance on fluency. This is a rough guide to when they might begin to learn them but we never put a ceiling on what your child can achieve and will challenge any pupil who can already demonstrate these skills by encouraging them to apply their facts to problem solving! Home learning in maths will rehearse these key number facts.
Reception – counting in 2s, doubling (x2) and halving by sharing (/2)
Year 1 – counting forward and backwards in 2s, 5s and 10s
Year 2 – 2x, 5x, 10x, 3x and related division facts
Once your child has learned these basics there are only 21 more facts for them to learn before the can say their tables to 10 x 10!
Year 3 – 3x, 4x, 8x and related division facts
Year 4 – 6x, 7x, 9x, 11x, 12 x and related division facts
Year 5 and 6 – revision of tables up to 12 x 12 using reasoning and problem solving
Supporting your child
Here are 10 easy ways you can help your child to make rapid progress in their maths.
1. Download the free Times Tables App! Parents’ of children in Years 2 – 6 can download a free app and, using their unique User ID and password given to them by their teacher, practise their speedy and accurate recall of multiplication facts up to 12 x 12 against opponents in the class and even children from other schools! Parents and teachers can work together to monitor their progress and the children can access this fun, free App as often as they like!
2. Support your children with their home learning! But without giving them the answers, ask; how do you know? What method are you using?
3. Give them thinking time! They will develop speed as they gain confidence.
4. Celebrate mistakes! Use them as an opportunity to improve their understanding and encourage your children to think of ways to correct them.
5. Work little and often! A small amount of help with counting, times tables or rapid fire addition and subtraction will really add up. Click on the Number Formation Rhyme Cards to download some simple rhymes to use for your Nursery or Reception children!
6. Play games! Snakes and ladders, card games, Ludo, Monopoly, dominoes, darts, battleships etc. Check out http://lewishamtoylibrary.org.uk/ online or in Lewisham Shopping centre to check out games for a small fee.
7. Notice numbers in your environment! Look for them wherever you go and encourage your child to interpret them i.e. bus numbers or timetables, prices in the supermarket or special offers!
8. Be positive about maths! Even if you aren’t confident yourself. We give messages to children about own experiences of maths which might influence the attitudes they have.
9. Come and see us! We are regularly reflecting on how we can improve the maths provision for our wonderful children and want you to be at the heart of this.
10. Check out these links! Whether it be at the library or home, here are a few starting points for extra curricular maths activities. click on the links or pictures below:
(Student programmes – subscription only. Pupils have User ID and passwords)