At Meadowside, the teaching of Mathematics is highly prioritised. Within the Foundation Stage is guided by the requirements and recommendations set out in the Early Years handbook and Development Matters. All children have the opportunity to develop their understanding of mathematics through child initiated and adult led sessions. Maths is used as part of the daily routine, the continuous provision, stories and songs and rhymes. Staff use observation and to inform the child’s next steps within number and numerical pattern. By the end of the foundation stage our children will be expected to achieve the Early Learning Goals.

In Key Stage 1 and 2, Maths is taught daily in one-hour lessons. Alongside this, 4-a-day sessions are used for the spaced retrieval of key information which informs assessment.  Additional opportunities (such as World Maths Day) are planned throughout the year for enrichment of our curriculum. Within the curriculum, the key knowledge and skills for each year group can be seen in the White Rose progression maps. These have then been broken down into topics in our long and medium term planning, which class teachers then use to plan progressive and engaging lessons. Our medium term planning ensures each session follows a sequence of learning that encourages our children to engage, explore, explain, elaborate and evaluate.

The teaching sequence in mathematics ensures that children move from concrete representations, to visual before moving to with abstract. To do this, all lessons start with a maths journal where a practical (concrete) problem is discussed, moving from this practical question to visual representations and finally to the abstract working out of the problems.  “Chilli challenges” allow children to take responsibility within their learning and move through this learning at their own rate moving from the overlearning of varied fluency tasks to the practical application of maths through open-ended problem-solving tasks.

  1. Language development

Within maths, oracy opportunities are planned into the curriculum that allow children to develop the physical, linguistic, cognitive and social and emotional aspects of learning. Opportunities are planned that allow children to present, explain and discuss key aspects of their learning and to challenge each other in their views.

Dialogical teaching empowers students to challenge each other’s views, expand ideas and build and evaluate arguments. We want the children to challenge each other to lead them to a deeper understanding of the topics that we are teaching. Group and paired work is used daily, particularly in the journaling parts of the lesson in KS1 and 2 and in continuous provision in EYFS.

Development of vocabulary in maths is vital in our children closing the vocabulary gap to their peers from more affluent areas. Vocabulary is explicitly planned, taught and assessed, ensuring a thorough grasp of new language. Display boards within all classrooms are added to progressively from lesson to lesson in topics with key vocabulary. These can then be referred back to in the next lesson to promote sticky learning and to scaffold all children in retaining key language and information. The learnt vocabulary is assessed at the end of each topic using traffic light systems where children have to demonstrate the use of the words in context.

Reading is a crucial part of the development of vocabulary and of language development. As part of our enrichment in maths, High quality texts are used (particularly on World Maths Day) that support a deeper understanding of new vocabulary within context. Well chosen, maths-based texts are also used throughout the curriculum as class novels, guided reading texts and as part of maths lessons as a basis for learning – particularly in EYFS and KS1.

  1. Knowledge

Our Maths curriculum is planned and sequenced so that new knowledge and skills build on what has been taught before. We recognise that new learning is fragile, so our approach is generative and sticky, enabling our pupils to make links between new and existing knowledge to aid long term retention. Learning is sequenced to ensure that there are opportunities for spaced learning and links between curriculum areas are explicit allowing children to build a detailed schema for across different disciplines in maths and also across other subjects.

At Meadowside, we follow the White Rose Planning sequence, however this is adapted to meet the needs of our pupils i.e. spending longer on certain concepts to ensure that the children fully understand what has been taught before moving on. We prioritise certain units of work to meet the needs of our children based on previous question level analysis of formative assessments.

Development of both disciplinary and substantive knowledge is well sequenced to ensure that children know and remember more.  Both of these types of knowledge are sequenced within the White Rose Progression documents.

New knowledge is taught through direct instruction and modelled by the teacher. Children are given time to use independent practice and spaced repetition to further secure new knowledge. Following our whole school model for high quality teaching and learning (Appendix 1), we ensure that teaching strategies ensure the children learn more and remember more. The curriculum is organised to enable children to build webs of knowledge (schemas), with explicit links being drawn between new and existing knowledge. These links are highlighted within medium term plans of other subjects to ensure that staff explicitly make these links when planning lessons.

When knowledge is secure and links have been made, children are encouraged to take this knowledge deeper and apply this critically in different situations.  All children are encouraged to access open ended assessment tasks that allow children to take learning deeper and to demonstrate their critical thinking skills.

4-A-Day sessions and low stakes quizzes are used daily to ensure that knowledge is recalled and retained. These form part of our assessment for learning in Maths allowing us to revisit knowledge that isn’t secure.

  1. Skills

While the teaching of disciplinary knowledge is key to progress in subjects, children require the opportunity to turn this knowledge to practice and apply skills. Our Curriculum planning ensures that these opportunities are embedded for all children. Varied fluency activities are used to ensure that skills are overlearned before the children have opportunities to apply these to wider concepts.

Children are encouraged to ask their own questions about what they observe and make some decisions about which types of mathematical enquiry are likely to be the best ways of answering problems, including carrying out simple comparative tests and using trial and error. They should draw simple conclusions and use some mathematical language, first, to talk about and, later, to write about what they have found out. Pupils should draw conclusions based on their data and observations, using evidence to justify their ideas, and using their mathematical knowledge and understanding to explain their findings.

  1. Attitudes and values

In order to develop the children’s growth mindset, rather than simply praising success, we praise effort and persistence. We believe learning should be a challenge and within mathematics, our children are encouraged to take risks and to make learn from their errors.  Our approach to our curriculum aims to build a growth mindset, a respect for self and others, kindness and resilience, with staff modelling across the curriculum how to deal with challenge and adversity. We want our children to take risks and attempt challenges they find tricky. Our Chilli Challenges work well for this.

We want our children to see themselves as mathematicians and develop self-efficacy and intrinsic motivation in maths. Successes are shared daily at the start of every lessons so they can learn from their own and other’s achievements. From EYFS through to KS2, we give the children opportunities to be mathematicians in real life contexts and to celebrate the successes of their discoveries.

Local, Societal and Global

  • As an Inclusion Quality Mark flagship school, inclusivity is key to our culture as a school. Within the curriculum, we aim to celebrate difference and diversity. Key mathematicians from a range of backgrounds are celebrated from a range of backgrounds and children are encouraged to find out more about them. Strategies are used (As highlighted below) to ensure that all children can make good progress in maths. World Maths Day will be a focal point across the school each year to promote the importance and potential of Mathematics to our pupils. Our Maths curriculum aims to promote diversity. We encourage pupils to discover more about famous mathematicians from a variety of cultural backgrounds.
  1. Developing a love of mathematics

Enrichment activities for different year groups ensure that the children meet and discuss the roles of mathematicians across society.  Children often find joy in their discoveries in maths. Giving them opportunities to ask questions and explore their findings is key to this. Additional enrichment opportunities are provided for World Maths Day.


NFER assessments are used twice a year in years 1-6 as a summative assessment of the mathematics learnt. Question level analysis is used for key groups to ensure that we are providing additional opportunities for children to revisit areas that aren’t secure.

Formative assessment is an integral part of daily lessons and is first and foremost the essence of helping making our pupils make instant progress in their mathematical knowledge and in their skills. This is done through a mixture of high-level questioning, discussion, Oracy activities and written work.

We use live marking and feedback to enable teachers to target next steps for pupils effectively. Opportunities for children to review and improve their learning are embedded into each lesson. Children are given the opportunity to evaluate their own work, and that of their peers. During and on completion of a piece of work, the teacher responds, identifying areas for development. Children’s work is valued, celebrated and displayed around the class and school.

At the end of each year, a written report is given to parents that show whether a child is achieving the required standard. Maths targets are also discussed with parents and strategies to move learning forward are discussed.

Each unit of work is also assessed using the White Rose End of Block assessment materials. These provide a ‘snapshot in time’ of pupils’ understanding against our curriculum and help us to analyse current trends and also hone in on vulnerable groups that might require further support or intervention. If a child is working below, specific areas are fed back to parents to support learning and also highlighted in the assessments so that future teachers know what areas need more work to ensure a solid foundation to new learning.

Tracking of key groups, but particularly target children, allows for a better structure to learning. Regular sessions of a maths intervention called Number Stacks enable the children to fill gaps in their knowledge and understanding and make progress towards meeting age related expectations.

SEND and Inclusion

At Meadowside we have high expectations of all our pupils. However, we recognise that for some pupils, additional support is needed to ensure they can access tasks and so that they can retain key learning. Tasks are adapted or scaffolded in such a was so as to ensure that they are provide suitable challenges that focus on the mathematical learning and remove any barriers for learning that stop learning in mathematics. Teachers use their pupil passports and appropriate assessments to help inform their planning. This way, a person-centered approach ensures progress is made and makes their learning a personalised experience.

 At Meadowside, we want all learning to support independence wherever possible. Teachers will plan lessons so that pupils with SEND are able to successfully access the key content of the Maths curriculum and ensure that no ceiling is placed on their learning and what they can achieve. Promoting independence, we allow the children to feel a sense of equality and belonging in their classroom environment.

Where appropriate, the following strategies could be used for pupils with SEND:

Task Adaptation

  • Opportunities for overlearning key knowledge.
  • Technology used for recording information. Video recording of work if writing is an issue/use of speechnotes programme or Clicker 7/a scribe/dictation tool on Ipad.
  • Web based learning for practice and learning of key knowledge.
  • Use of concrete resources
  • Voice recordings of step by step instructions
  • Voice recordings of responses.
  • Screen shots and photographs
  • Voice recordings


  • Modeling of work specifically for a small group of children.
  • Vocab mats highlighting specific vocabulary for a task
  • Broken down instructions for a task.
  • Sentence stems from board/worksheet
  • Task organiser
  • Use of concrete resources
  • Further questioning
  • Additional focused explanations
  • Precision teaching of key knowledge.
  • Additional oracy opportunities.
  • Peer support
  • Times Table Grids


Additional strategies for pupils will be highlighted as a part of the SEND strategy meetings and in consultation with other professionals. These form part of a child’s pupil passport and support teachers in removing barriers for learning.

Where a child struggles with key aspects of learning, it is crucial that we highlight what is key knowledge for a child to move on with their learning. Progression maps highlight which knowledge is the basis for other knowledge later on within the maths curriculum. Staff therefore provide time for overlearning of this key knowledge where it is deemed appropriate for these children. Support and CPD is given to staff to ensure they have a good understanding of what learning is key to move on. These children are discussed regularly with the SENCo.

Interventions are planned for children who are struggling with specific aspects of the maths curriculum. Precision teaching, Power of Two/Plus one and other interventions ensure that gaps in learning are filled.

As part of our graduated response, where a child is working well below Age Related Levels, bSquared Assessments allow staff to assess their learning, monitor their progress and highlight any areas that need further support.

Designated Provisions

Within the Designated Provision and the Development Centre it is acknowledged that children will be working within the curriculum of a range of different year group. Therefore, objectives children within the room are accessing different parts of the curriculum at different times in their journey at Meadowside. Where possible, learning will follow appropriate objectives that will be differentiated to cover the curriculum from different year groups. Where this is not possible, split inputs will be used to introduce new learning to children in 1:1 or small group sessions delivered by a teacher or TA. All activities will lead to independent 'chilli challenges' that allow progress across the subject. Progress in the Designated Provision is tracked for all pupils using bSquared and children access summative assessments (NFER/SATs) where this is appropriate. All children access relevant White Rose assessments to assess the new knowledge that they have been working on.

Maths activities are planned using structures from our school maths policies ensuring Quality First Teaching for all of our pupils. A breakdown for individual lessons can be downloaded from the year groups objectives on White Rose.

Higher Attainers

Opportunities for higher attainers to take learning deeper are planned throughout the curriculum. Open ended tasks and high quality first teaching ensure that learning is taken deeper. Enrichment opportunities are planned throughout the year. Opportunities for children to explore careers in STEM are planned into the curriculum and accessed where appropriate. Visiting speakers, particularly those from similar backgrounds to our pupils are encouraged to come in and support classes in delivering key areas of maths.

CPD for staff

CPD is planned for staff throughout the year and opportunities are planned into our yearly training in line with our school development plan.  Staff are encouraged to also complete their own research. Coaching happens continuously throughout the year. Within the school and the Maths Co-ordinator offers support to all staff through co-teaching and holding planning meetings.  Further support is planned for teachers where needed.

Monitoring of Maths

The development cycle is set out by the senior leadership team at the beginning of each academic year. Monitoring includes book looks, lesson visits, learning walks, pupil/staff voice surveys and peer reviews with colleagues from other TCAT schools. All monitoring undertaken serves to improve our practice, with the aim of bettering the outcomes for our pupils.

Transition to KS3

At Meadowside, we work closely with our feeder secondary schools to ensure a quality of provision that gives our pupils firm foundations for Year 6 and beyond. Pupils in Year 5 and 6 regularly access maths transition lessons at the high school that allow them to demonstrate the knowledge that they have learnt and to ensure that learning in KS3 successfully builds on the foundations laid at KS2.


Mathematics within the Foundation Stage is guided by the requirements and recommendations set out in the Early Years handbook and Development Matters.

All children have the opportunity to develop their understanding of mathematics through child initiated and adult led sessions. Maths is used as part of the daily routine, the continuous provision, stories and songs and rhymes. Staff use observation and to inform the child’s next steps within number and numerical pattern.

Find out more about our EYFS Curriculum

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