At Nettleham Infant and Nursery School we believe all our children can be successful mathematicians. Teachers plan structured daily maths lessons with a mastery ideology that allows opportunities for children to explore the learning using a concrete, pictorial and abstract approach.
We intend to make Maths meaningful, exciting and engaging. We place great emphasis upon developing the key knowledge in mathematics so that all children can apply a solid understanding of number, data handling, shape, space and measures, in order to solve problems in a wide range of real-life situations.
We want children to think like mathematicians as they ask questions of the mathematics, debate possible approaches and spot patterns that help them to solve problems.
We use a wide range of practical and pictorial representations to ensure that students can see the structure of the mathematics. This allows all pupils equal access to mathematics and to experience success and enjoyment that will prepare them for the mathematical skills they will need in the future. Over time, children will become resilient learners who are able to accept that to struggle is a necessary step in their learning.
Children will be appropriately challenged and supported through varied fluency, reasoning and problem solving. Irrespective of personal starting points, children will explore maths in depth, and use a range of mathematical vocabulary to reason and explain. Pupils will persevere by building on previous knowledge and skills and apply these to a wide variety of contexts both within maths and across the curriculum. They will appreciate the relevance of maths in real life situations, recognising that it is not simply a set of rules
We implement our approach through high quality teaching and the delivery of appropriately pitched daily Maths lessons across school from the EYFS to Year 2 with support from the White Rose resources.
In Nursery, Maths is incorporated into the provision areas both indoors and outdoors. Children explore and practice key early maths knowledge through daily singing and counting activities as well as receiving an adult led maths input on a weekly basis. Group and individual next steps are planned using the EYFS frame and the schools own progression document.
In Reception, Maths is also incorporated into the provision areas both indoors and outdoors with challenges for children to undertake independently or with appropriate support and questioning from an adult. Reception children also undertake a daily maths input with the class teacher and where appropriate this is followed by a more focused maths activity. These activities are planned to build and develop the children’s mathematical knowledge.
In Years 1 and 2, children are taught maths through well-structured daily mastery lessons. Teachers use the ‘White Rose Hub’ resources to plan progressive maths lessons that allow all children to partake and succeed in the learning. We want to nurture each child’s confidence and encourage independence. Where children require additional support, ‘scaffolds’ are used to support children further to ensure that they have secured the small step before moving on. For children who understand a concept quicker, a further challenge is set to develop their mathematical knowledge and thinking. The idea behind this, is that children look deeper into a concept to solidify their understanding. Thus, developing and building upon their knowledge - again encouraging them to think like Mathematicians.
Daily assessment is incorporated into each lesson through the work in children’s books, group and individual discussions. We provide our children with live and verbal feedback and if they require additional time on a concept this will be incorporated into future maths lessons. Termly assessments are used as a diagnostic tool to ensure that teachers are adapting learning to meet the needs of all children and ensure that any necessary interventions are targeted specifically to meet the needs of children.
Ongoing formative assessment takes place within each maths lesson. This includes: teacher observations, questioning, discussions and marking and feedback. These outcomes are fed forward into timely teacher intervention and subsequent planning to ensure gaps in knowledge are closed and progress is not limited.
Outcomes from both end of unit and end of term assessments are used to identify gaps in knowledge and will inform future planning. Pupil progress will also identify precise actions and objectives for targeted focus children, including the lowest 20% who are not likely to meet end of year expectations and/or not making expected progress.
We also use a system of pre-teaching and flashbacks to teach new skills and assess previous skills and knowledge taught throughout and at the start of different units of work.
Help at home
We believe that quick retrieval of number facts is a fundamental part in developing your child’s understanding of number and that it plays a key role in solving mental maths calculations. It is likely that children who have problems retrieving addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division facts, including number bonds and multiples, will have difficulty understanding and using mathematical concepts they encounter later on in their learning.
Here is a useful website with lots of other ideas on how you can help with Maths at home:
Key Instant Recall Facts (KIRFs)
Please find below information about our Key Instant Recall Facts (KIRFs) which are being introduced to improve mathematical key fact recall across school. They can be found below
What are KIRFs?
To develop your child’s fluency and mental maths skills, we are introducing KIRFs (Key Instant Recall Facts) throughout Key Stage 1. KIRFS are a way of helping your child to learn by heart, key facts and information which they need to have instant recall of.
KIRFs are designed to support the development of mental maths skills that underpin much of the maths work in our school. They are particularly useful when calculating, adding, subtracting, multiplying or dividing. They contain number facts such as number bonds and times tables that need constant practise and rehearsal, so children can recall them quickly and accurately.
Instant recall of facts helps enormously with mental agility in maths lessons. When children move onto written calculations, knowing these key facts is very beneficial. For your child to become more efficient in recalling them easily, they need to be practised frequently and for short periods of time.
How can we access the KIRFs at home?
Each half term, children will focus on a Key Instant Recall Fact (KIRF) to practise and learn at home for the half term. They will be available on our school website below and each child will receive a copy to keep at home.
How do we practise the KIRFs?
The KIRFs include key vocabulary and examples of the key skills, as well as practical ideas to assist your child in grasping the key facts. Each KIRF also contains helpful suggestions of ways in which you could make this learning interesting and relevant. They are not designed to be a time-consuming task and can be practised anywhere – in the car, walking to school, etc. Regular practice - little and often – helps children to retain these facts and keep their skills sharp.
How are the KIRFs developed in school?
Throughout the half term, the KIRFs will also be practised regularly and in short bursts in school and your child’s teacher will assess whether they have been retained. Over their time at Nettleham Infant and Nursery school, we believe that - if the KIRFs are developed fully - children will be more confident when working with number, understand its relevance, and be able to access the curriculum much more easily. They will be able to apply what they have learnt to a wide range of problems that confront us regularly.
If you have any questions about how to support your child at home with our KIRFs, please do not hesitate to contact your child’s class teacher.