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Mathematics Policy




The United Nations Convention on The Rights of the Child states:


All children have the right to an education(Article 28); The purpose of education is to develop every child’s personality, talents and mental and physical abilities (Article 29); All children have a right to find out things, and say what they think through speaking, writing, drawing etc. unless it breaks the rights of others (Article 29).


This policy makes explicit the purposes, nature and management of the mathematics teaching and learning at Upton Infant School.  It forms part of the overall curriculum policy of the school and has been written collaboratively by all teaching staff, the numeracy governor and numeracy coordinator.


Mathematics is a tool for everyday life. It is a whole network of concepts and relationships which provide a way of viewing and making sense of the world. It is used to analyse and communicate information and ideas and to tackle a range of practical tasks and real life problems. It also provides the materials and means for creating new imaginative worlds to explore.




It is our aim to develop in children:


·         a positive attitude towards mathematics and an awareness of the fascination of mathematics

·         competence and confidence in mathematical knowledge, concepts and skills

·         an ability to solve problems, to reason, to think logically and to work systematically and accurately

·         initiative and an ability to work both independently and in cooperation with others

·         an ability to communicate mathematics

·         an ability to use and apply mathematics across the curriculum and in real life

·         an understanding of mathematics through a process of enquiry and experiment


Organisation of Teaching


The approach to the teaching of mathematics within the school is based on three key principles:


· a discrete mathematics lesson of 45 -50 minutes every day in Key Stage 1 / 30 minutes in Reception

· a clear focus on direct, instructional teaching and interactive oral work with the whole class and group

· an emphasis on mental calculation


Foundation Stage


In the foundation stage, Early learning Goals are followed to ensure continuity and progression from the Foundation Stage through to the National Curriculum. In Reception and the first half term of Year One, children in all classes are of mixed numeracy ability. Teachers use this to provide suitable learning opportunities for children by matching challenges and activities to the ability of the child. This is achieved by differentiated groups, paired work or open ended problems or games. Teaching assistants are used to support and guide learning. Children in the foundation stage have the opportunity to apply their weekly learning in a practical ‘Magical Maths’ session on a Friday.


Key Stage One


Each maths lesson begins with a mental oral starter, lasting no longer than ten minutes. This is followed by a lesson involving a clear and focused teacher input and independent or guided activity. Lessons are planned with clear objectives that are communicated clearly to the pupils. It is vital that every child knows what they are learning and why. Throughout each week there are a variety of approaches to maintain interest and enthusiasm whilst extending children’s learning and understanding of mathematical concepts. In each lesson, the teacher leads a guided group which aims to extend or support pupils by tailoring the objective to their needs. All lessons end with a short review of learning, assessment opportunity and look to the next step for learning.


Class teachers work in collaboration within their year group to teach mathematics and also in consultation with guidance from the mathematics coordinator. Children in Year One are set by ability from November. Children in Year Two are set by ability all year. Each teacher is responsible for planning, delivering and assessing numeracy in this ability set class. Continuity and progression is ensured by sharing information and books at transition periods and by following strategies to ensure even coverage.




Statutory requirements for the teaching and learning of numeracy are laid out in the National Curriculum (2000) and the Problem Solving, reasoning and Numeracy section of the Curriculum Guidance for the Foundation Stage (2008).


Foundation Stage


Numeracy in Reception is related to the children’s work and the objectives set out in the Early Learning Goals, which underpin the curriculum planning for children aged three to five. All children are given an equal opportunity to develop their understanding of number, calculations, pattern, shape, space and measure through ample, varied activities that allow them to enjoy, explore practise and discuss numeracy.


It is important that although the curriculum is tailored to the needs of our pupils that there is consistency in the opportunities presented across the year group in the three classes. Therefore numeracy is planned by the year team and to the needs of the pupils and class. A variety of guided and independent learning experiences are planned for the children.  Pupil provision is related to attainment, not age.


Key Stage One


To ensure complete coverage of the National Curriculum objectives and to meet statutory requirements, the Primary National Strategy Framework guidance is followed.  Unit plans A-E are used for Medium Term Planning and these inform the weekly short term plans devised by individual teachers, alongside the nature of the topic and knowledge of the children. Teachers use their professional discretion to plan and teach appropriate lessons for their class to ensure their children are competent and secure in each area of mathematics. Each teacher uses Assessing Pupil Progress (APP) to inform their planning. Annotated teaching plans, alongside APP, are used as an indicator for future planning and assessment.


Lessons are planned using a common planning format (see Appendix) and are collected and monitored by the mathematics coordinator.


Breadth of Study


Through careful planning and preparation we aim to ensure that throughout the school children are given opportunities for:


·         practical activities and mathematical games

·         problem solving

·         individual, group and whole class discussions and activities

·         open and closed tasks

·         a range of methods of calculating e.g. mental, pencil and paper and using a calculator

·         working with computers as a mathematical tool


Throughout the whole curriculum opportunities exist to extend and promote mathematics. Teachers seek to take advantage of all opportunities.


Pupils Records


There are occasions when it is both quick and convenient to carry out written calculations.  It is also important to record aspects of mathematical investigations.  Children are taught a variety of methods for recording their work and they are encouraged and helped to use the most appropriate and convenient method of recording.


Children are encouraged to use mental strategies before resorting to a written algorithm.




· The quality of marking is crucial.  A simple ‘X’ is of little assistance to a child unless accompanied by an indication of where the error occurred, together with an explanation of what went wrong.

·  Marking should be both diagnostic and summative and school policy believes that it is best done through conversation with the child but acknowledges that constraints of time do not always allow this.

·   Each piece of work is headed with the learning objective in the form of an ‘I can’ statement. On marking, this statement is highlighted in either pink, yellow or green to denote whether the child was fully, partially or not successful.




Teachers are expected to make regular assessment of each child’s progress and to record these systematically.  The following outlines the school policy for assessment in mathematics:


· Daily - Children’s progress in mathematics should take place as part of the lesson in an informal way and this will be used to help determine short term planning

· Half termly – Children’s attainment in maths is levelled against the Foundation Stage Profile (Foundation) or APP (Key Stage 1) each half term. Each class teacher has the responsibility of entering this data onto the whole school tracking system.

·  Yearly -  Children’s attainment in maths is levelled against the Foundation Stage Profile (Foundation) or APP (Key Stage 1) at the end of each year. Levels are reported to parents at the end of each Key Stage.



Monitoring and Evaluation


The mathematics coordinator is released regularly from his/her classroom in order to work alongside other teachers.  This time is used to monitor and evaluate the quality and standards of mathematics throughout the school and enables the coordinator to support teachers in their own classrooms. Pupil’s attainment is monitored through termly year group moderation and work scrutiny.


Reporting to Parents



  • Reports are completed before the end of the summer term and parents are given opportunity to discuss their child’s progress on other occasions.


  • Teachers use the information gathered from their half termly assessments to help them comment on individual children’s progress. This information is shared at termly Parent Consultation meetings.



Parental Involvement


Parents are invited into school termly to look at their children’s work. An open afternoon / evening is held once a year. When significant changes have been/are made to the mathematics curriculum parents are invited to a meeting or sent information via the newsletter and web site. Parents are welcomed into school to work alongside teachers in the daily mathematics lesson.


Alongside this policy, a school mathematics calculation policy has been produced jointly by all staff and the numeracy governor (see Appendix). This describes to parents the different strategies and methods taught to children throughout Upton Infant School.




It is our school policy to provide parents and carers with opportunities to work with their children at home.  These activities may only be brief, but are valuable in promoting children’s learning in mathematics.

Children in Years One and Two will receive weekly maths home learning activities.


The Role of the Headteacher and Governors


The role of the headteacher is to support the maths co-ordinator through monitoring, lesson observations, data analysis and keeping up to date with local and national strategies. The school has identified a numeracy governor. The numeracy governor visits the school termly to talk with teachers and when possible, observes some daily mathematics lessons. In addition, the numeracy governor meets regularly with the numeracy coordinator at a ‘working party’ meeting. The numeracy governor reports back to the curriculum committee on a regular basis. He is invited to attend relevant school INSET.




We aim to provide for all children so that they achieve as highly as they can in mathematics according to their individual abilities in order to enable their future life opportunities. We will identify which pupils or groups of pupils are under-achieving and take steps to improve their attainment. Gifted children will be identified and suitable learning challenges provided. Pupils identified with SEN have work differentiated.


Special Educational Needs


· Children with SEN are taught within the daily mathematics lesson and are encouraged to take part when and where possible and work is differentiated appropriately

· Where applicable children’s IEPs incorporate suitable objectives from the NNS Framework and teachers keep these objectives in mind when planning work.

· Support staff work collaboratively with the class teacher to support individuals or groups of children. They are provided with copies of planning to ensure they are aware of the objective of the lesson. Feedback is completed with the class teacher and support staff at the end of each lesson. This maybe written or verbal.

· Within the daily mathematics lesson teachers not only provide differentiated activities to support children who find mathematics difficult, but also activities that provide appropriate challenges for children who are high achievers in mathematics.

· Maths interventions are carried out where children have been identified as requiring extra support

· Children who are identified as mathematically ‘Gifted & Talented’ receive additional support from the inclusion teaching assistant


Equal Opportunities


· We incorporate mathematics into a wide range of cross-curricular subjects and seek to take advantage of multi-cultural aspects of mathematics.

· In the daily mathematics lesson, we can support children with English as an additional language in a variety of ways, e.g. repeating instructions, speaking clearly, emphasising key words, using picture cues, playing mathematical games, encouraging children to join in counting, chanting, finger games, rhymes etc.




· All teachers should organise an area within the classroom dedicated to mathematics resources.  This area is easily accessible to all children and allows them to become familiar with all resources. 

· Resources which are not used or required regularly are stored centrally.

· An up-to-date list of resources is attached in the Appendix.

· All teachers should have a mathematics display within their classroom to support learning.





  • Opportunities for teachers to review the scheme, policy and published materials are given on a regular basis during staff meetings.