At Longthorpe School we aim to ensure that all pupils become confident in the fundamentals of mathematics. We aim to ensure that they can reason mathematically and solve problems by applying their mathematics to a variety of routine and non-routine problems. Mathematics is broken down into seven strands: counting and understanding numbers; knowing and using number facts; calculating; understanding shape; measuring; handling data; using and applying mathematics.
Primary Advantage Maths (PAM) Program
We have adopted PAM as our primary program to enable successful Maths skills acquisition.
The PA Maths programme supports progression throughout the primary years and has a strong Concrete Pictorial Abstract (CPA) thread running throughout. This means that children are exposed to conceptual ideas at a concrete level with a range of apparatus (e.g. counters, beads, Numicon and Dienes) before moving on pictorial representations. This may mean diagrams, sketches or using the Singapore bar model. Doing so develops children’s deep conceptual understanding and skills proficiency which supports the next move into abstract mathematics, such as long division.
Maths lessons are designed to be interactive with a significant emphasis on children’s talk. Through discussing their ideas, children construct new understanding, engage in a supportive community of practice, take responsibility for their learning and allow the teacher a window into their thinking which enables appropriate action to help them progress. Fluency, reasoning and problem solving are three themes of the maths National Curriculum (DfE, 2014) and inform all maths teaching in Primary Advantage schools.
Teachers and support staff provide targeted support and assessment to help all children make good progress in maths. To see how you can help too, click here or visit our school’s YouTube page to access clips showing different maths strategies.
To find out more about Primary Advantage maths click here.
At Longthorpe, we believe that children should understand maths and not just ‘jump through hoops’ so when new learning is acquired they have got strong foundations to build upon. In school, all children access new learning by using apparatus to explore the concepts. When children fully understand, they begin to find quicker strategies but still have that really strong foundation to support them in applying this knowledge in more abstract situations.
We have collaborated with other schools on our teaching approaches to maths, both in Hackney and more recently Peterborough, which is helping us on our journey to becoming a ‘model school’ of Primary Advantage Maths approaches, for Peterborough based schools now using the programme; the programme aligns with our passion to enable all children to become confident mathematicians.
The Primary Advantage Maths specialists have produced some short video clips modelling the use of apparatus and how we teach these skills. Please click here for a list of links to these videos to see how it is modelled to your children. Please note the use of vocabulary, using keywords like re-grouping or exchanging and not borrowing or carrying as this vocabulary is not helpful to the children’s understanding of the maths concept.
In order to help support the children’s learning, we use Times Tables Rock Stars. The children can also log onto this system at home to further their learning in their own time. Please click on the logo to visit this online system.