Maths at our school is a very practical and fun subject! In the EYFS we investigate number, counting and practical addition and subtraction. We use Numicon to embed this and to help children realise relationships between numbers. Children count forwards and backwards every day, playing lots of number games and also working in the Learning Garden on many practical and problem solving maths activities. We recognise and learn to write numerals, and really give children strong foundations for the rest of their school career. Children solve challenges and count objects, recognising and ordering amounts and playing with numbers. They also learn about shapes and simple measurements of time and capacity. For example, investigating full, half full and empty outdoors in water trays. We really want maths to be a fun and stimulating experience for every child in the EYFS and for them to think that maths is creative and exciting.
In Years 1 and 2 we teach Maths through the ‘Maths No Problem’ scheme that follows the Singapore Maths principles. Each lesson is about investigation and understanding – so lots of talking about maths to develop their understanding. Children are encouraged to talk to partners, change their answers and ideas, make mistakes and see that they have, but not to be frightened or bothered by this. The talk about maths helps children to explain their thinking, see connections and patterns and to work out different ways to find answers and solve problems. Every lesson begins with concrete objects and practical investigations, started with open ended questions. The apparatus is available throughout the lesson if the children need this to help them work out answers or problems. Children move from the concrete to pictoral representations. Each child has a maths journal to show their understanding through writing, drawing, showing information and working out in a variety of ways and methods. Children can show what they know and how deep their thinking is in a variety of methods and diagrams. They reinforce this learning and apply their knowledge in a variety of ways using the Maths No Problem workbook to ensure that concepts are fully embedded. If they need to, children who may need to revisit the concept will be taken by a teacher to address any misconceptions, so that they are ready for Maths the next day.
This is a practical approach and leads on from the EYFS to ensure that children are fluent with numbers, confident to solve problems and investigate using different methods to find an answer. Most of all we aim to make Maths practical, non-threatening and exciting. We want the children to become independent learners and thinkers who are confident to try and have a resilient learning style and attitude to ensure that they are open to new ideas and methods.