Mathematics has always been given a high priority at Lady Barn. It is taught in a traditional structured way with children being encouraged to develop a quick facility with mental operations, follow logical and standard setting out and understand the processes they use so that they can apply them to a wide range of practical, problem and investigative situations.
Our aim is to give pupils the positive attitude to tackle confidently new mathematical scenarios using the knowledge and understanding they have gained. Mathematics is taught in mixed ability, class groups by the form teacher, all of whom are confident in the subject, with a number having a maths specialism.
A firm foundation
Year Five and Six teachers keep the class for two years so that instead of having to ‘get to know’ a new class, Year Six teachers are already tuned in to the strengths and weaknesses of the children. The Mathematics curriculum has evolved carefully over the years, bearing in the requirements of the external examinations at Year Six. The most demanding of these introduce the pupils to completely new topics and assess their ability to think mathematically to solve the problems posed. As a result of this we do not aim to coach pupils to the tests, but rather give the children the skills and to develop their ability to think for themselves. We believe that this firm foundation is imperative in order that pupils can build confidently on this base
Rather than following a commercially produced scheme, we prefer to identify the learning objectives and then by discussion in the weekly planning meetings, select the resources needed to teach the topics. There is a good range of text book material which is supplemented by work sheets, written to extend or reinforce aspects, either for the class as a whole or for specific pupils, as required. We frequently use textbooks aimed at higher curriculum year groups and by the end of Key Stage Two the resources used include those aimed at Key Stage Three.
Regular assessments take place at every level and weekly planning meetings for each year group allow teachers to plan, share ideas and advice and to compare standards. In Key Stage Two, all children complete a weekly mental maths test as well as times tables test. Assessments are evaluated and revised and decisions are taken as to how the year groups and individuals should progress.
Maths challenge success
Children regularly enter external challenges. These include the Maths Association Primary Maths Challenge and the Junior Maths Challenge run by the UK Maths Trust. Children from the school have won medals each year that they have competed. There are several maths activities within the school such as the Lady Barn Maths Challenges for children in Years Four, Five and Six. These are very popular team activities based around maths problems. The children compete for prizes and are judged on their mathematical skills and teamwork.
From Year One all children have access to an interactive online resource, ‘Mathletics’. ‘Mathletics’ is a learning platform, which contains over 1000 learning activities and a ‘Live’ element which allows children to compete against other children across the world. It provides instant feedback and children can work at their own pace. The children work on tasks appropriate to their age group and gain certificates which they share in assemblies. Teachers also set ‘Mathletics’ homework for the children to complete as part of their weekly homework.
The teachers at the school teach Maths with a passion. They are committed to providing a superb grounding for the children in the subject.
Mrs T Lochery – Head of Maths
Useful maths web links
NRICH Specialists in Rich Mathematics http://nrich.maths.org/public/
BBC Numeracy for Schools http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/websites/4_11/site/numeracy.shtml
*Please be aware that Lady Barn House School is not responsible for the content of external internet sites