Sele First School

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Mathematics provides a way of viewing and making sense of the world.  It is used to analyse, organise, communicate and manipulate information and ideas.  It is a highly inter-connected discipline, linking to many areas of the curriculum, through its precise use of language, through its development concepts associated with number, pattern, measures, data and shape, through its development of problem solving and investigative skills and through its development of analytical and logical thinking.  The mathematics curriculum should be bold, provide breadth and balance.


At Sele First School, we teach a mastery curriculum.  This means that teachers reinforce an expectation that all pupils can achieve high standards in mathematics and that the majority of pupils will progress through the curriculum content at the same pace.

Our aims in teaching mathematics are to:

  • Develop a positive attitude towards mathematics so as to ensure confidence in developing and using mathematical ideas and strategies and diminish fears and anxieties.
  • Ensure mathematics taught is meaningful and relevant to real life.
  • Foster the qualities of perseverance, creativity and flexibility in being able to adopt different approached when tackling problems.
  • Encourage children to become fluent in mathematics so that they develop conceptual understanding and the ability to recall and apply knowledge rapidly and accurately.
  • Develop children’s powers of reasoning to enable them to follow a line of inquiry, recognise patterns, conjecture relationships and generalisations and develop an argument, justification or proof using mathematical language.
  • Solve problems by applying their mathematics with increasing sophistication, including breaking down problems into a series of simpler steps, recording their work in a systematic manner and persevering in seeking solutions.
  • Enable the children to effectively communicate their understanding of Maths using precise mathematical language.
  • Develop the children’s ability to use new technologies to solve mathematical problems with efficiency and confidence.
  • Take ownership of their learning through being able to choose methods for recording their work, choose resources to support their learning and to take pride in their mathematical achievements.
  • Develop links between mathematics and other curriculum areas.
  • Use metacognition and self-regulation strategies to develop children’s ability to plan, monitor and evaluate their learning.


In the EYFS, mathematics is planned on a weekly basis and assessed using the criteria from the Early Learning Goals.  A daily Maths Meeting is held where children are taught key mathematical skills e.g. composition of 6 is 3+3, 2+4 etc.  Children are then provided with opportunities to practise this knowledge within their play and adult initiated activities.  During each week, children work on a mathematical teacher led task.

Children are given the opportunity to talk and communicate about mathematics.  They are encouraged to explore, enjoy, learn about, and use mathematics within their play and adult initiated activities.

Mathematics is one of the seven areas of learning and development within the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS). Each area is divided into Early Learning Goals, for mathematics these are:


Children at the expected level of development will:

  • Have a deep understanding of number to 10, including the composition of each number.
  • Subitise (recognise quantities without counting) up to 5.
  • Automatically recall (without reference to rhymes, counting or other aids) number bonds up to 5 (including subtraction facts) and some number bonds to 10, including double facts.

Numerical Patterns

Children at the expected level of development will:

  • Verbally count beyond 20, recognising the pattern of the counting system.
  • Compare quantities up to 10 in different contexts, recognising when one quantity is greater than, less than or the same as the other quantity.
  • Explore and represent patterns within numbers up to 10, including evens and odds, double facts and how quantities can be distributed equally


Children are taught in mixed ability class groups for approximately 1 hour daily. Within the mastery curriculum, differentiation is achieved by emphasising deep knowledge and through individual support and intervention.  Teachers use precise questioning in order to develop, extend and assess pupil’s knowledge.  Children are encouraged to communicate effectively through being able to explain and justify their thinking using precise mathematical language.  Children have opportunities and are taught to work both collaboratively and independently.  The intention is to provide all children with full access to the curriculum, enabling them to achieve confidence and competence – ‘mastery’ – in mathematics.

The programmes of study for mathematics are set out year-by-year for KS1 and KS2.  By the end of each key stage, pupils are expected to know, apply and understand the methods, skills and processes specified in the relevant programme of study.

Within the programmes of study, units taught include:

  • Number – number and place value
  • Number – addition and subtraction
  • Number – multiplication and division
  • Number – fractions (including decimals in Y4)
  • Measurement
  • Geometry – properties of shapes
  • Geometry – position and direction
  • Statistics (from Y2 onwards)