Contact Us

Telephone:
01946 372656

Emergency Mobile:
07872 181619

Email:
admin@lowca.cumbria.sch.uk
head@lowca.cumbria.sch.uk

Postal Address:
Lowca Community School,
Lowca,
Whitehaven,
CA28 6QS.

Lowca Community School Mathematics Aims and Vision

At Lowca Community School we empower our children with a ‘CAN DO’ attitude in mathematics. We encourage children to develop their knowledge and understanding of mathematics and aim for all pupils to enjoy and achieve in mathematics and become confident mathematicians. We aim to ensure every pupil is given a broad, balanced, engaging and relevant curriculum that takes into account the requirements of the National Curriculum and any other guidance documents.  

INTENT  

We aim that all pupils: 

  • Become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics so that they develop conceptual understanding and the ability to recall and apply knowledge rapidly and accurately.  
  •  Can solve problems by applying their mathematics to a variety of problems with increasing sophistication, including in unfamiliar contexts and to model real-life scenarios.  
  •  Can reason mathematically by following a line of enquiry and develop and present a justification, argument or proof using mathematical language. 
  • Be ready for secondary school by the end of Year 6 

 Our beliefs: 

 We believe that ability within Mathematics is not fixed. We are developing the mindsets of children and adults alike to develop a Growth Mindset and a ‘We Can’ attitude to Mathematics. We believe that through quality first teaching and intelligent practice, children learning together and immediate intervention that all children have the potential to ‘go deeper’ and broaden their understanding of mathematical concepts.  

Our definition of Mastery:  

At Lowca Community School we have a core set of principles and beliefs for achieving mastery in mathematics. This includes a belief that all pupils are capable of understanding and doing mathematics. Pupils are neither ‘born with the maths gene’ or ‘just no good at math.’ With good teaching, appropriate resources, effort and a ‘can do’ attitude all children can achieve and enjoy mathematics. Mathematics is mathematics and the key ideas and building blocks are important for everyone.  

Mastery is not just being able to memorise key facts and procedures and to answer test questions accurately and quickly. Mastery involves knowing why as well as knowing that and knowing how. It means being able to use one’s knowledge appropriately, flexibly and creatively and to apply it in new and unfamiliar situations. 

For all maths concepts teachers need to ensure that children are “challenged through being offered rich and sophisticated problems.” After developing fluency, children need to show that they can apply their knowledge in mathematics and then move on even further to prove they have mastered the concept.  

Our Mathematics in Mastery curriculum: In Years 1-6 we have developed our curriculum using the White Rose schemes of learning to allow teachers and learners to achieve a secure and deep understanding of each Mathematical Concept. It is designed to give us the opportunity to address key points individually, ensure that children have a secure and deep understanding of those points, before offering the opportunity to ‘go deeper’ within them. In Early Years and where appropriate in Year 1 the principles of the EYFS Framework will be followed, and there will be the opportunity to ‘Explore Maths’ and develop their understanding of Mathematical concepts through play. 

IMPLEMENTATION  

Mastery teaching and learning: 

 In every Mathematics lesson you will see the following:  

  • ‘Quality first’ teaching; tailored to meet the needs of the learners in each class, and immediate intervention to address gaps in learning where necessary,  
  • Resilient learners with Growth Mindsets and a ‘We Can’ attitude to Mathematics, whatever their previous level of attainment, 
  • Teachers using high-quality questioning to explore children’s understanding and develop it further,  
  • Teachers making use of misconceptions to further understanding of key concepts,  
  • Teachers using a range of methods to explore key Mathematical concepts which appeal to pupils’ different styles of learning, employing concrete/pictorial/abstract representations of Mathematical concepts,  
  • Learners being given the opportunity, through careful planning, to ‘linger longer’ on and ‘go deeper’ in mathematical concepts,  
  • Pupils learning together  
  • Development of fluency, reasoning and solving.  

Planning, learning and teaching:  

Lowca Community School follows the mastery math lesson style of CONCRETE-PICTORIAL ABSTRACT (based on the Shanghai/Singapore approach to Mastery in Mathematics) and White Rose Maths to ensure children have a true understanding of a concept. Teachers also ensure that knowledge, reasoning and problem solving are incorporated in all weekly planning. Alongside the mastery approach, we ensure that reasoning is at the core of every lesson. The children know they need to explain why their answer is correct and how they worked it out. After we are certain that they have truly mastered a concept, the children then apply their knowledge to problem solving activities 

IMPACT 

Children demonstrate a deep understanding of maths. This includes the recollection of the times table.  
•     Children display a positive and resilient attitude towards mathematics and an awareness of the fascination, excitement and fun of mathematics.  
•    Children show confidence in Believing that they will achieve. 
•    Each child achieves objectives (expected standard) for year group. 
•    The flexibility and fluidity to move between different contexts and representations of maths. 
•    The chance to develop the ability to recognise relationships and make connections in maths lessons.  
•    Mathematical concepts or skills are mastered when a child can show it in multiple ways, using the mathematical language to explain their ideas, and can independently apply the concept to new problems in unfamiliar situations. 

The Mastery Approach at Lowca Community School materials and definitions: 
 

In order to support our approach to teaching for Mastery of Mathematics, we use the White Rose Maths materials to support our planning and teaching.  

These materials: 

Have number at their heart. A large proportion of time is spent reinforcing number to build competency. 

Ensure planning supports the ideal of depth of learning before breadth of learning. 

Provide plenty of opportunities to build reasoning and problem-solving elements into the curriculum. 

At Lowca Community School, we believe it is important that children develop a deep understanding of the mathematical concepts they are learning. Therefore, over the last two years in school we have changed our teaching of maths, taking on the concrete, pictorial, abstract (CPA) approach.  This is a highly effective approach to teaching that develops a deep and sustainable understanding of maths.  

Concrete 

Concrete is the “doing” stage, using concrete objects to model problems. Instead of the traditional method of maths teaching, where a teacher demonstrates how to solve a problem, the CPA approach brings concepts to life by allowing children to experience and handle physical objects themselves. Every new abstract concept is learned first with a “concrete” or physical experience. 

For example, if a problem is about adding up four baskets of fruit , the children might first handle actual fruit before progressing to handling counters or cubes which are used to represent the fruit. 

Pictorial 

Pictorial is the “seeing” stage, using representations of the objects to model problems. This stage encourages children to make a mental connection between the physical object and abstract levels of understanding by drawing or looking at pictures, circles, diagrams or models which represent the objects in the problem. 

Building or drawing a model makes it easier for children to grasp concepts they traditionally find more difficult, such as fractions, as it helps them visualise the problem and make it more accessible. 

Abstract 

Abstract is the “symbolic” stage, where children are able to use abstract symbols. 

Only once a child has demonstrated that they have a solid understanding of the “concrete” and “pictorial” representations of the problem, can the teacher introduce the more “abstract” concept, such as mathematical symbols. Children are introduced to the concept at a symbolic level, using only numbers, notation, and mathematical symbols, for example +, –, x, / to indicate addition, multiplication, or division. 

Although above, CPA is shown as three distinct stages, our teachers will go back and forth between each representation to reinforce concepts as frequently as is needed by the individuals within our class groups.