A true understanding of mathematical concepts relies on the ability to use, apply and problem solve. To do this effectively it is essential that the children have confidence with number and number operations.
At Tree Tops we use an exploratory approach in the Nursery and reception. An ability to work with concreate apparatus, pictorial representation and in the abstract when pupils can apply skills swiftly and with confidence is vital and so we continue to teach practical maths into Key Stage 1, building confidence and the ability to see patterns and systems securely.
We familiarise the children with addition and subtraction and secure their understanding with these particular number operations, also working on doubling and halving. We use very practical learning strategies to teach children money, time and measurement and provide a variety of hands on learning experiences. Photos, discussion and drawing will capture learning and demonstrate next steps. The children also learn about telling the time and using money which we encourage them to relate to their own experiences.
In Key Stage 2 pupils build on this achievement and a deeper understanding of mathematical processes, concepts and skills. There is a strong emphasis on the development of mental arithmetic and all pupils are given opportunities to use and apply mathematics in real life situations.
Class teachers also plan for opportunities to develop and apply key mathematical skills in other subjects throughout the year.
A daily structured lesson and additional ‘quick-fire’ fun daily challenges give pupils the opportunity to develop these mental maths skills and teaches concepts through exciting activities.
We continue to use real apparatus known as ‘manipulatives’ to enable pupils who may find this challenging to reinforce understanding and check their working out.
As a group of local Academies, we have devised an agreed calculation policy that takes children, teachers and parents through a consistent method for working out problems using the four operations.