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Maths at Miles Coverdale

As mathematicians we:

  • Understand mathematical concepts and vocabulary
  • Learn new skills and apply them in different areas of maths
  • Can recall many number facts with ease
  • Like solving problems
  • Learn from our mistakes
  • Have developed many written and mental calculation strategies
  • What do we want to achieve in Maths?

    At Miles Coverdale we aim to:

    1. Develop a positive attitude to maths as an interesting and attractive subject in which all children gain success and pleasure
    2. Develop mathematical understanding of key concepts to a reasonable amount of depth.
    3. Encourage the effective use of maths as a tool in a wide range of problem-solving activities within school and, subsequently, adult life
    4. Develop an ability in the children to express themselves fluently, to talk about the subject with assurance, using correct mathematical language and vocabulary
    5. Develop mathematical skills and knowledge and quick recall of basic facts
    6. Develop a range of efficient mental calculation strategies for all four operations;
    7. Be confident using written calculation methods for all four operations.
  • What are our principles and values?

    What is our pedagogical approach? What knowledge and skills do we want our children to have? What do we cover and when?

    We aim for the vast majority of pupils to make progress at broadly the same pace.

    We use a small step approach to allow all pupils the opportunity to access learning which is based upon our adoption of the Maths Mastery approach to learning.

    We ensure that teachers have flexibility to spend longer amounts of time on a topic where required until pupils have really understood key concepts to a reasonable amount of depth. For example, pupils are asked to reason in a variety of ways and explain their Mathematical thinking before moving onto new learning. At Miles Coverdale, we believe that deep learning lasts longer and takes longer. We prioritise the use of Mathematical language to ensure that children are able to use precise and concise vocabulary. Teachers/support staff are able to take part in a combination of short term and long term continual professional development to ensure that they are confident in their subject knowledge/skills. We ensure that they are able to address any misconceptions quickly and understand why we carry out certain approaches to teaching Maths in line with research. Richard Skemp (Department of Education-University of Warwick) shares approaches such as ‘Instrumental’-what we do eg rules and routines alongside ‘relational’ why we do it.We have developed a Miles Coverdale knowledge/skills Progression Map which reflects the National Curriculum Objectives and is adapted to suit the needs of pupils at our school.


  • What training do we provide for staff?

    We use a combination of short term and long term continual professional development for our teachers and support staff to ensure that they are confident in their subject knowledge/skills. We ensure that they are able to address any misconceptions quickly and understand why we carry out certain approaches to teaching Maths.

  • What would you expect to see in a Maths Lesson?

    Teachers ensure that pupils have the opportunity to revisit prior learning during each Maths Session. There is flexibility for teachers to spend varying amounts of time on this until they are satisfied that pupil’s have grasped concepts with a reasonable amount of depth.

    Pupils will have the opportunities to new learning (in small manageable steps) using the CPA approach to support pupils to understand key concepts.Teachers scaffold pupil’s learning where appropriate using a range of manipulatives and pictorial representations. Pupils are introduced to Key Vocabulary which is shared to support them to use precise and concise language. Pupils have regular opportunities to engage with the three main aims of the National Curriculum-Fluency, problem solving and reasoning. These are not necessarily seen in every lesson but pupils do have regular opportunities to develop these areas over time. At Miles Coverdale primary school, we see these aims as highly connected. For example in Fluency, children are encouraged to use their knowledge of number facts and apply these to real life problems. Children are encouraged to use and compare different approaches to solve Mathematical problems.Pupils are given opportunities to use their reasoning skills to decide the best approach to solve a problem. Teachers use of STEM sentences where appropriate to support pupils to explain Mathematical talk.

  • How do we support children that are finding Maths difficult?

    Teachers at Miles Coverdale know the child. They understand their strengths and their learning needs. This is based upon their analysis of historic data and their assessment of a pupil’s learning in class. When a child is identified as requiring enhanced learning, a program of interventions is put in place. Sessions are regularly timetabled and are used to embed and consolidate key areas of maths, so as support learners by building the child’s understanding of essential content as well as their motivation and confidence. Normally, these will involve breaking down key concepts into small manageable understandable steps. The child is supported in their learning through the use of concrete manipulatives. For example, Base 10 or Dienes is an effective way to support children’s understanding of both addition and subtraction. The impact of these high-quality interventions is measured by the use of intervention grids and is reviewed termly. 

  • How do we challenge pupils?

    At Miles Coverdale, we strongly believe that the very best way to nurture and grow mathematical talent and interest is to pose challenging, stimulating problems which encourage deep mathematical thinking. This is done with age-appropriate mathematical content within the right problems and will often take the form of a ‘Challenge ‘question set by the class teacher.

  • How do we ensure a love of learning within Maths for all pupils?

    At Miles Coverdale we create learning opportunities for students to experience that mathematics knowledge and skills go beyond the classroom walls. For instance, during a recent whole school themed week, we linked litter collection with recycling and climate change. The children recorded their results using a range of graphs to demonstrate their results.  We encourage students to look around and see where they can experience maths in their daily lives to drive home the importance of learning it in the classroom.

    We emphasise the importance of children embracing a challenge. The children are encouraged to test their knowledge and problem solve. We always believe that mistakes in the classroom are a key learning opportunity for both students and teachers.

    But maybe above all else, we try and ensure that maths is fun.

  • How do we assess pupils?

    Research (Black et al 2003) shows that the most effective and beneficial forms of assessment are ones which support learning. Formative assessment forms a crucial part of every lesson and as such is built-in to lesson design. We ensure that classroom activities are well structured and involve conceptual and procedural variations and intelligent practise. There are regular opportunities for discussion and critiquing of answers form a significant part of this assessment as well as further opportunities for reasoning and explanation skills to be developed. As well as this, there is a timetabled approach to ‘learning walks’ for the monitoring of planning and pupil’s book looks, as well as lesson observations.  Teachers also use summative assessment to monitor and track pupil’s progress.

  • What does Home Learning for Maths look like?

    Home learning is given on a weekly basis. It provides the children with an additional opportunity to consolidate the key learning from the weeks learning. The activities are selected by Class Teachers who have flexibility to adjust home learning depending on the needs of their pupils.  This is a further step implemented to ensure that children do not fall behind their peers.

  • How do we support parents?

    At Miles Coverdale we engage with our parent body to help parents get to grips with what Maths looks like in our school. We also hope to provide support and advice about how parents can help their children to consolidate their understanding of real-life maths at home as well as in school.

    ‘A very useful workshop. Sometimes it is not easy to help my daughter at home because I don’t want to confuse her. The variety of websites you have recommended will help us have a better understanding of Math’ (School parents

    Here is a selection of resources and information from our recent parent workshop.

    • White Rose - One Minute Maths APP (free) –designed for Key Stage 1-subitising, addition and subtraction and Multiplication and Division (timed with a score-individual)
    • Home Learning Section –whiterosemaths.com – Parents and pupil’s section –free learning resources and guidance videos of how to help pupils at home. (EYFS-Year 6) –use drop down box.
    • Busy things (Early Years)
    • BBC Bitesize –free Maths games
    • Number rock (YouTube) –Times table songs
    • BBC Super movers (YouTube). Times tables with movements

Progression of Knowledge and Skills

Cultural Capital - Maths

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