Our Curriculum Approach
At Tyndale we teach maths using a Mastery Approach. This involves working through new skills and concepts through concrete → pictorial → abstract stages.
The concrete stage to Mastery involves the use of equipment the children can handle and manipulate in order to understand new concepts. Some examples of equipment include hundreds, tens and ones blocks, bead strings, counters and tens frames, 3D shapes, and fraction tiles.
Children in all year groups have opportunities to explore new concepts with physical equipment as this helps them to visualise, relate and understand the new information clearly. It is the ‘doing’ stage of learning.
The pictorial stage relates to representing the concrete aspect through drawing pictures and models. These include hundreds, tens and ones tables, part-part-whole grids, fraction segments, number lines and bar models.
This stage helps children to ‘see’ visual representations of the concrete aspects they explored previously helping them to make connections and be able to break down similar problems. This bridges the real resources to the abstract numbers.
The Abstract Stage relates to children being able to confidently use symbols and digits to represent problems. This is always the last step in the teaching process for new concepts as children need to explore new concepts physically and pictorially in order to make connections and be able to apply their new skill in different situations such as worded problems.
Throughout the Mastery approach children are encouraged to show their reasoning behind the maths. This is simply children being able to explain ‘how they know’ and is developed mainly through questioning and journaling. Questioning helps to draw out and deepen understanding by asking things such as “why is that true?”, “what if this number changed?” or “how did you solve that?”. Journaling is a way of allowing children to draw or write down their process in order to aid their explanation along the way or reflect on their learning around a new concept .
In Reception, children have daily access to maths related play and explorative activities as well as focused maths ‘in the moment’ opportunities with teachers. Children’s work is recorded in the form of pictures and observations made by adults in the room and can be viewed online using Tapestry.
Children in Years 1- 6 receive at least an hour a day of dedicated maths teaching, working through a range of mathematical skills across each year, often spiraling and revisiting them throughout. These include: Place Value, Addition and Subtraction, Multiplication and Division, Fractions (decimals and percentages), Shape, Space and Measure, and Statistics. Children’s work is recorded in maths work books which are available to view at any time throughout the year including parents evenings.
Teachers regularly give children verbal feedback throughout lessons but may also include written comments in their books which are responded to.
Opportunities for all children to ‘dive deeper’ and access higher level or greater depth challenges to stretch their understanding are always readily available.
For children with special educational needs or those identified by teachers that are in need of a boost within their maths learning, specialist interventions are available, delivered by trained Teaching Assistants at regular points throughout the week. These are carefully assessed to ensure accelerated progress.
Most importantly, Tyndale wants to engender a can-do attitude as well as a confidence and love of maths in our children. We hope to dispel any fear or assumptions of failure around maths with a growth mindset approach and show what a creative, helpful and fun skill it can be both in the classroom and outside in the real world
As a school, we choose to follow the National Curriculum for Maths.
Purpose of Study
Mathematics is a creative and highly interconnected 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.
The national curriculum for mathematics 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
Mrs Natalie Gregory
Natalie has been at Tyndale since the first day the school opened, and has led Maths since 2014. She is passionate about maths and constantly finds new ways to pass that passion onto others. In 2018, Natalie completed her Masters in Leadership in Education which included a dissertation on Mastery Maths.