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Maths at Hollyfast Primary School


At Hollyfast, we aim to teach a rich, balanced and progressive curriculum using maths to reason, problem solve and develop fluent conceptual understandings in every area of the curriculum. We understand that Mathematics is an essential part of everyday life which enables pupils to make sense of the world around them. We aim to prepare our children for life, in school and beyond, by providing them with the essential mathematical skills they will need.


The National Curriculum for Mathematics aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics, including through varied and frequent practice with increasingly complex problems over time, so that pupils develop conceptual understanding and the ability to recall and apply knowledge rapidly and accurately.
  • reason mathematically by following a line of enquiry, conjecturing relationships and generalisations, and developing an argument, justification or proof using mathematical language.
  • can solve problems by applying their mathematics to a variety of routine and non-routine problems with increasing sophistication, including breaking down problems into a series of simpler steps and persevering in seeking solutions

Our intention is to provide a mathematics curriculum that is high-quality, promotes enjoyment and confidence, and inspires curiosity about Maths. We intend our children to develop a deep-rooted and long-term understanding in all areas of Maths through teaching for mastery. Using a concrete, pictorial, abstract approach in lessons ensures every child has access to a wide range of quality manipulatives, models, diagrams and representations, which supports their conceptual understanding and allows them to see the connections between different aspects of the maths curriculum.


Our Approach

Our Maths curriculum covers statutory objectives from the National Curriculum with the key knowledge, skills and understanding mapped out to allow solid foundations to be built upon and encourage a mastery approach. We follow the White Rose Maths schemes of learning and these underpin our maths curriculum. White Rose Maths is a blocked scheme, which allows for depth and breadth of learning within each strand of mathematics. Maths lessons take place daily across the school and are delivered through quality first teaching. Reasoning mathematically and explaining are an important aspect of lessons, as well as being able to problem solve. 


Sessions are underpinned by the following principles:


  • Concrete, Pictorial and Abstract Learning: Children engage with a wide and varied range of concrete manipulatives, pictorial representations and abstract methodologies within each session. Cohesive use of CPA is a fundamental part of mastery in mathematics for all learners, not just those pupils with SEND. Concrete and pictorial references scaffold and strengthen understanding and are widely used as a teaching and learning tool from Foundation Stage to Year 6.


  • Fluency, Reasoning and Problem Solving: Every learning session includes the opportunity to develop fluency skills, construct chains of reasoning using relevant knowledge alongside relevant terminology and solve increasingly complex problems in a systematic and coherent way.


  • Mathematical Vocabulary: Sessions include explicit reference to vital mathematical vocabulary and the use of stem sentences to support and encourage all children to communicate their ideas with mathematical precision and clarity. These sentence structures often express key conceptual ideas or generalities and provide a framework to embed conceptual knowledge and build understanding.


  • Fluent Recall: We are committed to ensuring that pupils secure their knowledge of number facts and methods. Our pupils engage in regular low stakes testing through a Fluent in 5 session at the beginning of their Maths lesson.


Opportunities are provided for children to rehearse and apply their number and calculation skills, i.e. the mathematical facts, concepts, methods and strategies they have learned. Incorporated within this are opportunities to develop rapid recall of number facts including times tables, number bonds and addition and subtraction facts, and to develop speed and accuracy when performing mental and written calculations. 


Teachers carry out formative assessment through AfL in each session and feedback is given to children verbally, through self/peer assessment and through marking. Teachers then use this assessment to influence their planning. Children are rapidly identified as needing further challenge or additional support, and we ensure that this is provided in a timely manner.


Children complete pre- and post-unit assessments for each phase of learning. Results are used to further inform planning and allow for tailored interventions groups to take place to ensure the objectives are secured. More formal assessments take place termly and are used to track attainment and progress.