Curriculum – Maths

At St Bede’s Catholic Primary School, we believe that mathematics equips pupils with a uniquely powerful set of tools, through developing an ability to calculate, reason and solve problems. It enables children to understand and appreciate relationships and patterns in both number and space in their everyday lives. Through their growing knowledge and understanding, they also learn to appreciate the contribution made by many people to the development and application of mathematics.

It is our aim to develop:

  • A growth mindset about ability to learn mathematics
  • A positive attitude towards mathematics and an awareness of how fascinating elements of mathematics can be
  • Competence and confidence with numbers and the number system and other mathematical knowledge, concepts and skills
  • Problem solvers, who can reason, think logically, work systematically and apply their knowledge of mathematics
  • An ability to communicate using mathematical language
  • An ability to work both independently and with others


How we implement mathematics at St Bede’s:

At St Bede’s, our aim this year is to embed the mastery approach to teaching mathematics using the White Rose Maths Hub schemes of work, supplemented by Planpanion planning materials. Central to our approach are the 5 Big Ideas which underpin mastery in mathematics.


We aim to deliver high quality maths lessons using the following key principles: This approach has mathematical problem solving at its heart and has three key principles, we teach children to:

  1. Use spoken and written language with confidence and clarity to explain and justify mathematical reasoning. Every lesson involves children explaining mathematics.
  2. Have a deep conceptual understanding of mathematical concepts. This is achieved through covering fewer topics in greater depth. Pupils master concepts rather than learning procedures by rote. They do this using concrete objects and pictures before moving to abstract symbols (numbers and signs).
  3. Develop mathematical thinking, including: generalising, classifying and comparing, and modifying.

Fluent Recall

We are committed to ensuring that pupils secure their knowledge of Times Tables and Related Divisional Facts by the end of Year 4. Our pupils engage in regular low stakes testing through Times Tables Rock Stars to practice fluent recall. It is our aim to ensure pupils are secure in multiplication and division facts for 2’s, 5’s and 10’s by the end of KS1; they begin counting in 3’s by the end of Year 2.

Structure of Lesson

Lessons will follow a specific structure to allow for continuous assessment:

  1. *Maths fluency ‘Flashback 4’ *
  2. Sharing of the learning objective and stem sentence linked to the main objective
  3. Teacher input with time provided for children to practice and discuss new concepts, as well as explaining their reasoning using mathematical vocabulary
  4. Independent work – with further input for less confident learners
  5. Plenary

*Daily fluency sessions of quick maths should last for 10minutes and include, times tables, number bonds, 4 operations and arithmetic. This enables the revisiting of topics covered in the previous lesson, last week and even topics from earlier in the year or further back. Taking just a few minutes each lesson, this is a fun way to recap and ensure essential skills are regularly revisited and retrieved to strengthen retention.

Mastering Number

This project aims to secure firm foundations in the development of good number sense for all children from Reception through to Year 1 and Year 2. The aim over time is that children will leave KS1 with fluency in calculation and a confidence and flexibility with number. Attention will be given to key knowledge and understanding needed in Reception classes, and progression through KS1 to support success in the future.


All teachers plan daily mathematics lessons following the above structure supported by the White Rose Maths on-line teacher resources, supplemented by ‘Planpanion’ planning materials. Teachers will create an ‘s’ plan to plan a sequence of lesson, combining learning objectives where applicable to support mixed aged classes. Planning includes small steps learning objectives, success criteria, brief text on what the teacher will be modelling, key vocabulary and reasoning and problem-solving opportunities

Where possible teachers pre-empt ‘big’ misconceptions that many children will have – e.g. a rectangle/oblong has four lines of symmetry (diagonals). Teachers also plan which vocabulary they will use and which models, images and concrete resources they will use to aid learning. Effective plenaries are only part-planned as misconceptions only arise during the teaching of the lesson. However, all plenaries refer to the learning outcome and the success criteria in a meaningful way, allowing the children some time for self-assessment.

We ensure that across each term children are given a range of experiences in mathematics lessons e.g. practical activities and mathematical games, group problem solving activities, individual, group and whole class discussion activities, open and closed tasks. We ensure that children can use a range of methods to calculate and have the ability to check whether their chosen methods are appropriate, reliable and efficient.

A separate ‘Calculation Policy’ has been written to ensure complete continuity and gradual development of number skills.

Our staff have high expectations of all children, irrespective of ability, and encourage them to be successful and achieve their full potential. Our aim is to ensure challenge for all. Children are encouraged to have a growth mindset about their ability to do mathematics. Encouraging children to ‘have a go’ is seen as paramount.


In some lessons children ‘self-differentiate’ and choose the level of challenge right for them. In other lessons, teachers direct children to the correct level of challenge based on their assessment in the initial phases of the lesson.

Differentiation of tasks is done in various ways:

  • Open ended questioning and activities which allow more able children to offer more sophisticated mathematical responses
  • Stepped Activities which can be accessed at different steps, supporting and challenge all
  • Recording e.g. allowing some children to give verbal responses and photographing their learning
  • Resourcing e.g. Use of cubes, 100 squares, number lines, mirrors to support.
  • Grouping according to ability so that the groups can be given different tasks when appropriate. Activities are based on the same theme. Part of independent work often involves some focused, targeted group work from the teacher. However, groupings are ‘fluid and flexible’ based on the needs of individual pupils.

Vocabulary and precision of language

Developing children’s language and vocabulary is absolutely essential.

  • In all lessons, attention is given to whether key vocabulary has been learnt.
  • Key vocabulary is visible on the ‘maths working wall’ during lessons and instantly added to as new words arise.
  • Paired talk activities are used to encourage children to talk about their mathematics.
  • Teachers insist that children mirror the language they hear the adults using.
  • Where appropriate, children are encouraged to answer using stem sentences such as: “I have ____ groups of ____ and ____ remaining.”
  • Adults mirror back alternative words of the same meaning to enrich children’s range of vocabulary. E.g: Child says ‘3 times 5 is 15’, teacher says, ‘yes, the product of 3 and 5 is 15’ or ‘3 multiplied by 5 equals 15’.
  • Children are required to provide justification and reasoning for their answers. For example, ‘I know the shape is a square because….’
  • Teachers are required to have sound subject knowledge and understanding of the correct terminology and vocabulary and they refer to the ‘mastery of maths’ glossary of maths terms if unsure. E.g. There is no such thing as a ‘take away’ sum (because ‘sum’ means ‘add’). We use the terms ‘calculation’ or ‘equation’.


At St Bede’s, we strive for all pupils to achieve their full potential and this is reflected in our pupil outcomes at each phase. Our pupils achieve well and make good progress from starting points.

Teachers promote a positive attitude towards maths and have high expectations of all pupils, providing challenge and engagement through quality teaching and learning small step sequences. Children are supported to develop both collaborative and independent skills as well as developing a growth mindset. A range of

assessment, monitoring and moderation is undertaken as well as intervention when necessary to ensure the success of all children.

STBS Mathematics Progression