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Here at Edge Hill Junior Academy, we use a mastery approach for maths.  Our aim is to teach children to see the relationships between numbers and other mathematical areas so that they have a deep understanding of the subject, avoiding a formulaic, procedural approach to maths.


We use some visual models and approaches that adults may not be familiar with.  Some parents feel it is difficult to help their child with maths at home because it is different to how they were taught.


The aim of this page is to give visitors an insight into the visual models and language that we use in school.  Some will be very simple models that show small numbers but then can be used with larger numbers and more complex problems to help children understand. Some of the examples will be familiar as traditional methods that have been taught for many years.


Maths ‘Mastery’ Approach

During maths lessons at Edge Hill, we plan to ensure that children engage enthusiastically with their maths learning, showing stamina, resilience and perseverance even when the learning is challenging.  Children will have regular opportunities to discuss their learning in pairs, small groups or as a whole-class using correct vocabulary and reasoning explanations.  Children will be able to model their thinking in different ways including formal methods or diagrams, bar models, number lines, apparatus or any other support where appropriate. 

Work will be recorded correctly in books with feedback that supports children to be accurate with answers, methods and vocabulary.  At the end of each lesson, children will have made progress against the Learning Outcome(s) either independently, following carefully planned input from the teacher, or with support as identified by the child or an adult in the lesson. 

If the progress and attainment is limited, intervention will be put in place in a timely manner in order for all children to keep up with the maths learning.  Displays in the room and around the school will further support the learning of maths.  Teaching staff willingly embrace a mastery approach in maths, and are keen to develop understanding and expertise collaboratively through discussion, practice, colleague support and review.


Edge Hill Academy


Mathematics Policy


1. Aims and objectives


1.1 Mathematics teaches us how to make sense of the world around us through developing a child’s ability to calculate, to reason and to solve problems. It enables children to understand and appreciate relationships and pattern in both number and space in their everyday lives. We aim to put our children at the centre of their own learning and place great emphasis on nurturing skills and attitudes such as resourcefulness, resilience and co-operation.


1.2 The aims of mathematics are:




  1. Teaching and learning style


2.1 The school uses a variety of teaching and learning styles in mathematics lessons. Our principal aim is to develop children’s knowledge, skills and understanding in mathematics. We do this through daily lessons and the application and development of key skills across other curriculum areas. Children are taught in sets and not in their own class groups. There are 3 sets in each year group and we have an intervention group to support the least able 2 or 3 children of each year group from Year 3 to 5. The intervention group runs at the same time as the scheduled maths lesson. During lessons we encourage children to ask as well as answer mathematical questions. Each maths set has Teaching Assistant support where possible. They have the opportunity to use a wide range of resources such as number lines, number squares, digit cards and small apparatus to support their work. Children and teachers use ICT in mathematics lessons where it will enhance their learning, and to assist with modeling ideas and methods. Wherever possible, we encourage the children to use and apply their learning in everyday situations and across the curriculum.


    1. We acknowledge that people learn in many different ways, and when planning our lessons, we take into account these different forms of learning ensuring that activities are matched to children’s needs balancing challenge and support. We encourage children to take responsibility for their own learning, to be involved as far as possible in reviewing the way they learn, and to reflect on how they learn – what helps them learn and what makes it difficult for them to learn.


2.3 Our Planning Model

‘Outstanding teachers have clarity’

Teachers will use differentiated learning objectives which are clear statements that show pupils what knowledge, skills and understanding they are expected to learn/acquire at the end of the lesson. They will also include a Learning Outcome that requires the children to use Problem Solving, Reasoning or Investigation skills in the context of the lesson.


The lesson will be begin with practice of a mental skill that is the theme for that week, linked to the homework for that week and tested at the end of the week.


Planning Process


1. Objective

The essential knowledge, skills or understanding required for all children to make progress. (Children need to know clearly what they have to do to get it right!)


2. Standards

The essential knowledge, skills or understanding required for all children to make progress. The national curriculum expectations and the features of these expectations teachers want pupils to understand.


3. Activities

Teachers will plan activities that will help all pupils to make visible progress. (Activities differentiated at child’s level informed by assessments to support their learning with active lesson starters to engage children immediately).


In order to teach outstanding lessons, teachers will regularly adopt the 80 – 20 rule. Children are active for at least 80% of the lesson.


Teachers will ensure:


  • The teacher and pupils develop the lesson together in response to the learning needs.
  • Whole-class and group dialogue is skillfully orchestrated and supported as an integral feature of the lesson to accelerate learning and develop pupils’ independence.
  • Teacher intervention in discussions is minimal but timely and in response to critical learning moments.
  • Questions are structured so as to provoke thoughtful answers.
  • Questioning uses a range of tools and answers provoke further questions and are seen as the building blocks of dialogue rather than a terminal point.
  • The dialogue in the classroom is one of learning with vocabulary that matches this.
  • Children and adults engage readily in opening lines of learning. The teacher skillfully links these together to form a progression of linked learning.
  • Effective feedback is seamlessly sewn into the day to day teaching so that progress in every lesson is good or better. Pupils seek feedback, act on it and can give effective feedback as well.


2.5 Each lesson lasts for approximately 70 minutes. Teachers will use their judgment to determine the organisation, structure, location and pace of the lesson depending on the Learning Outcomes and needs of the children. Generally lessons will consist of a reflection on previous learning, active introduction, core activities and plenary (used for assessment purposes, setting the lesson in context, applying or extending knowledge or skills). In good and outstanding lessons the mental starter often feeds into the main activity/introduction. If the mental starter is not related to the main LO it will be kept very short.


2.6 Teaching of basic skills (Tables and see appendix 1 Key skills for each year group) will be incorporated in to other curriculum areas if appropriate and tables, key language/skills, etc will be practiced each day during afternoon registration.


2.7 Standard Panning pro-forma will be used to plan lessons adapted from Abacus (see appendix 3)


2.6 Children are set a weekly homework task in order to strengthen their learning in mathematics. This task directly links with the current unit of learning and is differentiated for each maths set.



  1. Mathematics Curriculum planning and Presentation


3.1 Mathematics is a core subject in the National Curriculum and we use the 2014 National Curriculum through Abacus and White Rose as the basis for implementing the statutory requirements of the programme of study for mathematics.

3.2 We carry out the curriculum planning in mathematics in three phases (long-term, medium-term and short-term).

3.3 Our medium-term mathematics plans, which are adopted from the White Rose materials and give details of the main teaching objectives for each term, define what we teach. They ensure an appropriate balance and distribution of work across each term. These plans are kept by both the class teachers and the subject leader.

3.4 It is the class teacher who completes the weekly plans for the teaching of mathematics. These weekly plans list the specific learning objectives for each lesson and give details of how the lessons are to be taught. The class teacher keeps these individual plans, and the class teacher and subject leader can discuss these on an informal basis.


3.5 There are Seven Strands to our Mathematics Curriculum

  • Using and applying mathematics
  • Counting and understanding number
  • Knowing and using number facts
  • Calculating
  • Understanding shape
  • Measuring
  • Handling data



3.6 Using and Applying/ problem solving

Children will be given opportunities to solve a range of problems including:

  • Finding all possibilities
  • Logic problems
  • Finding rules and describing patterns
  • Diagrams problems and visual puzzles
  • Word problems


Pupils are taught to tackle problems using a „step-by-step approach.

  1. R- read the problem
  1. U- underline and understand the task
  2. C- Chose a suitable strategy
  3. S- Solve the problem using the chosen strategy or change to a

more appropriate one if necessary

  1. A- Answer the problem
  2. C- Check the answer


It is important that this approach is not seen as linear; children may need to review and apply a different strategy several times to solve a problem.


Pupils are taught a range of problem solving skills and strategies, including:

Acting out a situation

Drawing a picture or make a model

Making an organised list or table

Using “Trial and Improvement

Working backwards

Making a prediction and testing it with particular examples

Trying a simpler case

Reasoning logically

Looking for a pattern



    1. Teaching Computational methods are done in a systematic and uniform way (see appendix 2)


    1. All year groups will use A4 squared books: 1cm squared for Year 3 and Year 4 and 0.7cm squared for year 5 and year 6. All work will have the appropriate learning objective as the title (LO to be printed and stuck in for less able children) All work will have the date in numbers and the LO and date will be underlined carefully.



  1. Contribution of mathematics to teaching in other curriculum areas


4.1 English

Mathematics contributes significantly to the teaching of English in our school by actively promoting the skills of reading, writing, speaking and listening. For example, we encourage children to read and interpret problems in order to identify the mathematics involved. The children explain and present their work to others during plenary sessions. Younger children enjoy stories and rhyme that rely on counting and sequencing. Older children encounter mathematical vocabulary, graphs and charts when using non-fiction texts.


4.2 Science

During science lessons, children are able to use and apply their data handling skills when creating tables and graphs of scientific measurements. Whole class discussion of data also highlights the importance of clear recording of information. Children are also able to use a wide range of measuring devices in a real-life context. Children are required to read the scales on Newton meters, measuring cylinders, weighing scales and a variety of other instruments. Where opportunities arise, the children will carry out their activities outside in order to see science in context.


4.3 Information and communication technology (ICT)

Children use and apply mathematics in a variety of ways when solving problems using ICT. Younger children use ICT to communicate results with appropriate mathematical symbols. Older children use it to produce graphs and tables when explaining their results or when creating repeating patterns, such as tessellations. When working on control, children use standard and non-standard measures for distance and angle. They use simulations to identify patterns and relationships.


4.4 Personal, social and health education (PSHE) and citizenship

Mathematics contributes to the teaching of personal, social and health education and citizenship. The work that children do outside their normal lessons encourages independent study and helps them to become increasingly responsible for their own learning. The planned activities that children do within the classroom encourage them to work together and respect each other’s views. We present older children with real-life situations in their work on the spending of money.


4.5 Spiritual, moral, social and cultural development

The teaching of mathematics supports the social development of our children through the way we expect them to work with each other in lessons. We group children so that they work together, and we give them the chance to discuss their ideas and results. The study of famous mathematicians around the world contributes to the cultural development of our children.



  1. The teaching of mathematics to children with special needs


5.1 We enjoy teaching mathematics to all children, whatever their ability. It is part of the school curriculum policy to provide a broad and balanced education to all children. We provide learning opportunities that are matched to the needs of children with learning difficulties. Work in mathematics takes into account the targets set for individual children on their Individual Target Sheet.



6 Assessment and recording and marking and Target Setting


6.1 We assess children’s work in mathematics from three aspects (long-term, short-term and medium-term). We make short-term assessments which we use to help us adjust our daily plans. These short-term assessments are closely matched to the teaching objectives.


6.2 We make medium-term assessments to measure progress against the key objectives, and to help us plan the next unit of work. We use termly assessments (Puma) as a way of measuring children’s progress and use Target Tracker to track the progress of all children. We identify those children who are underachieving and provide additional support to accelerate progress (within class or with the use of an Intervention Programme: 1stClass@Maths, Success@Arithmetic, Plus 1 or Power of 2).


6.3 We make long-term assessments towards the end of the school year, and we use these to assess progress against school and national targets. We can then set targets for the next school year and make a summary of each child’s progress before discussing it with parents. We pass this information on to the next teacher at the end of the year, so that s/he can plan for the new school year. We make the long-term assessments with the help of termly tests and teacher assessments. We use the national tests for children in year 6. We also make annual assessments of children’s progress.


6.4 Teachers sometimes meet to review individual examples of work against the national exemplification material.


  1. Resources


7.1 There is a range of resources to support the teaching of mathematics across the school. All classrooms have a wide range of appropriate small apparatus including calculators. Mathematical dictionaries are available in school. The library contains a range of books to support children’s individual research. A range of software is available to support work with the computers.


Steps to success in mathematics: Securing progress for all children

This compendium of mathematics resources helps staff to plan and provide teaching and learning that will ensure all children progress through the National Curriculum levels over Key Stages 1 and 2


There are also a number of resources in school to support teaching of mathematics including WAbacus, Folens; Folens for Less Able, Folens for More Able; Cambridge Primary Maths; Heinemann Maths; Maths For Schools, various other photocopiable materials.


8 Monitoring and review


8.1 Monitoring of the standards of children’s work and of the quality teaching in mathematics is the responsibility of the mathematics subject leader. The work of the mathematics subject leader also involves supporting colleagues in the teaching of mathematics, being informed about current developments in the subject, and providing a strategic lead and direction for the subject in the school. The mathematics subject leader on a termly basis evaluates strengths and weaknesses in the subject and indicates areas for further improvement. The headteacher allocates regular management time to the mathematics subject leader so that s/he can review samples of children’s work, undertake lesson observations of mathematics teaching across the school and monitor progress of children. The subject leader will provide the governors school improvement committee termly updates to review progress in maths.


We hold termly moderation meetings with a given focus each term.



Equality statement

“The governors and staff are committed to providing the full range of opportunities for all pupils, regardless of gender, disability, ethnicity, social, cultural or religious background. All pupils have access to the curriculum, and the right to a learning environment, which dispels ignorance, prejudice or stereotyping.”


The school acknowledges that some children have S.P.L.D. within K.S.2


Because of this classrooms will be dyslexia friendly and staff will consider the suggestions laid down by S.E.N.S in the Dyslexia Friendly School handbook and where appropriate, lessons will be multi-sensory.



2020 - 2021


Maths Curriculum (Currently being updated)