Maths At Priors Hall
At Priors Hall, our aim is to develop curious and creative mathematicians who thrive on investigating and exploring mathematical concepts and ideas, whilst developing a deep understanding and love of the subject.
We follow a Teaching for Mastery approach, believing that mastering a mathematical concept is achievable for all children, focusing on deep and sustained learning, making connections and developing reasoning alongside procedural and conceptual fluency.
We foster a growth mindset culture and our maths teaching and learning is underpinned by the following key messages:
- Everyone can learn maths to the highest level.
- Mistakes help us to learn; never be afraid to make mistakes.
- Asking great questions deepens our understanding.
- Maths is about being creative and making connections.
- Maths is about being fluent and flexible.
- Understanding maths is much more important than how fast you are.
- The steps that you take when finding the answer are just as important as the answer itself.
Teaching Mathematics for Mastery at Priors Hall – a learning community
At Priors Hall alc, we teach mathematics with a mastery approach from our Early Years all the way through to Year 6. This approach helps children to build a rich, deep understanding of mathematical concepts and be able to apply this learning across other subjects and beyond.
What do we mean by mastery?
The essential idea behind mastery is that all children need a deep understanding of the mathematics they are learning so that:
- Future mathematical learning is built on solid foundations which do not need to be re-taught.
- There is no need for separate catch-up programmes due to some children falling behind
- Children, who, under other teaching approaches, can often fall a long way behind, are better able to keep up with their peers, so that gaps in attainment are narrowed whilst the attainment of all is raised.
- Children who grasp key concepts rapidly are challenged to deepen their mathematical understanding
Concrete, Pictorial and Abstract
Children’s conceptual understanding and fluency is strengthened if they experience concrete, visual and abstract representations of a concept during a lesson. Moving between the concrete and the abstract helps children to connect abstract symbols with familiar contexts, thus providing the opportunity to make sense of, and develop fluency in the use of, abstract symbols.
For example, in a lesson about addition, children could be asked to draw a picture to represent the sum, create physical patterns through the use of various manipulative resources, or in a subsequent lesson, they could be asked to discuss the similarities and differences of three visual representations of the same question: