“All things in nature are written in the language of mathematics.”
At Christ Church C of E Primary School, we have adopted a mastery approach to the teaching and learning of Mathematics.
By the end of their time at Christ Church, we believe that our children will master their mathematical skills to become fluent mathematicians, be able to reason and solve a variety of problems by applying what they have learned in a range of contexts in order to be systematic and resilient thinkers and be equipped with valuable life skills.
We plan to ensure that all children develop a secure and deep understanding of the mathematics they are learning so that future mathematical learning is built on solid foundations. We encourage our children to have a positive mindset and advocate that all children are able to succeed in mathematics, regardless of their prior attainment. We recognise that success is linked to effort, so we challenge and support children to gain a greater depth of understanding, valuing mistakes as a key part of learning.
Our curriculum is mapped out across each term, ensuring longer time is prioritised for key topics. Typically, our lessons are planned to be approximately 45 minutes daily and focus on key learning objectives, which progress from day to day in small steps. We also plan separate fluency and skills practice sessions, which are designed to enable our children to become fluent in working with number and the four operations.
When it comes to times tables, speed and accuracy are important – the more facts your child remembers, the easier it is for them to do harder calculations. At Christ Church, all children in years 2-6 have a Times Table Rock Stars (TTRS) login, and this is part of the their homework.
Times Table Rock Stars is a fun and challenging programme designed to help pupils master the times tables!
To be a Times Table Rock Star you need to answer any multiplication fact up to 12×12 in less than 3 seconds! The aim is to develop the speed and confidence of our children when recalling times tables, which will help them considerably in Maths as a wider subject
We advise that your child does a little bit of times table practice at least four times a week. In our experience, short bursts of daily practise are more effective than spending hours once a week.
Garage - the questions will only come from the times tables the teacher has set for the week. As pupils start to answer questions, TT Rock Stars works out which facts they take longer on and will give them more of these questions to answer. The Garage is best for getting quicker at a few facts. Players get 10 coins per question.
Studio - the questions in the Studio can be anything from 1×1 up to 12×12.
TT Rock Stars calculates each the mean speed from their last 10 games in the Studio and translates into a Rock Status.
They earn 1 coin per question and the Studio is the place for them to set their best time across all the tables.
NumBots equips each pupil with the set of core maths skills they require by building their knowledge from the ground up - starting at the very beginning with subitising.
Once pupils can recognise small quantities of objects (“counting-without-counting”), they are asked to subitise two groups, presented together. The deliberate use of previous arrangements helps introduce the idea of numbers being partitioned, laying the foundation for number bonds.
Familiar pictorial representations (including bar models and cherries) raise the difficulty of questions without affecting pupils’ confidence. Pupils begin to explore abstract number problems within 10, and practice automating their responses to “one/two more/less than...” questions.
This natural mathematical progression from one concept to the next ensures pupils are fully prepared to move on, from adding and subtracting within 10, to bridging 10, to finally answering questions involving two-digit numbers. Number lines and hundred squares are then used to explain more sophisticated addition and subtraction strategies, such as partitioning and compensation.
Instant recall of key number facts must be built on a secure and genuine mathematical understanding in order for pupils to move forward and solve increasingly complex problems.
Numbots Story Mode is designed to develop pupils’ understanding of the relationship between different numbers and concepts, such as partitioning and the part-whole model. NumBots’ deliberate teaching-for-mastery approach has led to carefully sequenced and varied levels that ensure pupils fully grasp each essential new skill. As a result of methodically layering up the complexity, pupils maintain maths confidence and are primed to learn the next concept.
As well as cementing their understanding, pupils’ recall is also significantly boosted. While Story Mode is underpinned by best practice in memory formation - i.e. short, spaced practice sessions on interleaved material - the quick-fire questions and low-stakes quizzing in Challenge Mode enhances pupils’ retrieval of number bonds and addition and subtraction facts and improves the efficiency of their mental strategies.