The new National Curriculum states:

“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.”

Mathematics and being Mathematicians at Primrose Hill

At Primrose Hill we are passionate about supporting all children to have a positive learning attitude towards mathematics. We aim to create a culture where all learning is seen within the context of meaning and purpose; learning is a journey we are ALL on, it is not something that is being done to us. As such, when talking about maths at Primrose Hill we talk about “being mathematicians”. We aim to develop children’s reasoning, logical thinking and problem solving skills by providing rich mathematical experiences where children can apply their knowledge of mathematics to everyday life.

Organisation of the curriculum

The new National Curriculum forms the basis for our long term planning; setting out the expectations in each year group. Our medium term planning organises the topics systematically term by term and our short term unit plans are prepared for daily teaching.

Maths Mastery

At Primrose Hill we teaching and learning is driven by Maths Mastery, whereby all learners have the opportunities to delve deeper into understanding mathematical concepts.

Key aspects from Maths Mastery are deployed in the Early Years including: covering less but going deeper; adopting the concrete, pictorial, abstract (CPA) approach. We use a variety of curriculum resources, including Cando Maths, the White Rose Maths Hub, Nrich and NCETM (National Centre for Excellence in the Teaching of Mathematics) resources which ensure continuity and progression in the teaching of mathematics. Teachers have the flexibility to explore resources that enable ‘small manageable learning steps’ to be supported and developed in the children’s learning.

The teacher’s role in lessons is to:

  • demonstrate a clear model – this is to remain on display throughout the lesson for children to access and refer to and illustrates the success criteria (working walls)
  • allow time for discussion and pair work
  • continually assess children’s understanding using multiple hinge questions where appropriate
  • provide support or scaffolding when needed
  • present challenge and to develop understanding through expert questioning and carefully crafted lessons

    Intelligent and Deliberate Practice

    A key feature of teaching for mastery is the precise design of pupil activities and practice questions, so that pupils are taken down a path where the thinking process is practised with increasing creativity rather than pupils repeating a mechanical activity. The arrangement of these tasks and exercises draw pupils’ attention to patterns, structure and mathematical relationships, thus providing ‘intelligent practice’ and the opportunity to deepen conceptual understanding. We use a range of significant strategies to develop and enhance the learning and teaching of mathematics.

    We approach teaching with the ‘I do, we do, you do’ approach, each approach will be dependent on the pupils’ learning and the teacher’s ability to adapt their teaching according to the learning.

    Pace and Depth

    As much as possible the teaching team follow the concrete, pictorial and abstract (CPA) approach to mathematics. Where applicable, the children begin their learning in the concrete with a range of manipulatives to support their understanding. As their conceptual understanding develops they move towards the pictorial representation of the learning and finally to the abstract numeral and symbols. The children are able to record the ‘real story’ and the ‘maths story’. To develop fluency, reasoning and problem solving, we use  ‘Try It’, Twist it’, ‘Solve It’ approach to developing independence  ‘Try It’ ensures that learners have understood what the ‘concept is’; ‘Twist It’ enables them to develop skills around ‘what it is not’, and ‘Solve It’ deepens problem solving.

    Use of Manipulatives/Resources

    Children are introduced to and encouraged to use a range of models and manipulatives including Numicon, Cuisinaire, Dienes and Base 10 resources to support them in developing and showing their understanding of mathematics. We think carefully about how and when these resources are used to develop the children’s ability to talk about and demonstrate their understanding. As much as possible these resources are available in class on or around the ‘Maths Help Desk’ and children are encouraged to utilize these resources independently as well as when directed by adults.


    Working Walls

    All previous and present learning is presented on Working Walls. These show the learning journey through the daily lesson objectives or WALTs (We Are Learning To…), present key vocabulary, they present a clear visual prior learning and present learning, with modelled steps for children to refer, encouraging independent work. These displays are pivotal in recording the learning journey throughout each unit, they are created with the children during the lessons so are relevant and purposeful.

    Calculation Policy

    The Calculation Policy sets out a clear progression throughout the school for the four operations. It shows the expectations for the end of each school year. It ensures continuity in the teaching and learning of each operation.

    Mental Skills

    Mental skills are taught throughout the academic year. This includes the modelling of mental strategies and time to practise key mental skills. Times table practise happens regularly throughout the week this does not necessarily happen only in Maths lessons. Fluency is practised at any opportunity during the school day.