Ms R McFarlane

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 (July 2020) 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.

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'Teachers ensure that the context and purpose of the learning is clear to pupils and establish concrete links with other areas of the curriculum.' Challenge Partners OUTSTANDING 2018

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 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 focused 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.

Haylock with Manning 2014

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.

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 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)

bbc-bitesize crickweb everyschool woodlandsMs R McFarlane

Maths Subject Leader