In Mathematics at Gamlingay Village College we teach students an understanding of process and application, geometry and measures, handling data and number and algebra. Encouraging students to explore and develop alternative approaches and strategies to solving problems. Developing a repertoire of mathematical language and appropriate usage of symbols is also a key aim.
Maths lessons are structured in such a way that students are encouraged to self-reflect on their own ideas and work, as well as becoming critical friends through the use of peer assessment and the use of peer mentors (champions). Indeed, across the school, there is an emphasis on students “communicating mathematically”; sharing ideas and strategies on how to tackle different problems.
We understand that not every child has confidence in their maths skills and therefore we teach the students to talk about Maths and their methods, not simply focus on getting a right answer. We also encourage our students to spot mathematics in their everyday life, both in school and at home.
Ultimately, we expect students to achieve their personal best, to be engaged, to contribute to and enjoy their lessons.
Key Stage 2
The principal focus of mathematics teaching in Year 5 is to ensure that pupils become increasingly fluent with whole numbers and the four operations, including number facts and the concept of place value. This should ensure that pupils develop efficient written and mental methods and perform calculations accurately with increasingly large integers and decimals. At this stage, pupils will develop their ability to recognise, describe, draw, compare and sort different shapes and use the related vocabulary. Teaching will also involve using a range of measures to describe and compare different quantities such as length, mass, capacity/volume, time and money.
Pupils are taught in their tutor groups and have 5 lessons per week.
The principal focus of mathematics teaching in Year 6 is to ensure that pupils extend their understanding of the number system. This should develop the connections that pupils make between multiplication and division with fractions, decimals, percentages and ratio. By the end of year 6, pupils should be fluent in written methods for all four operations, including long multiplication and division, and be able to apply them. In addition to this pupils will study interpreting statistics and explore the fundamentals of algebra. Pupils should read, spell and pronounce mathematical vocabulary correctly.
Pupils have 6 lessons per week and as a result of Year 5 assessments pupils are grouped into two broad ability groups. One group will have a smaller number of pupils who will receive extra support.
Pupils are continuously assessed through classwork, homework and tests building a complete picture of the pupils' ability and achievements. All pupils’ work is assessed according to national curriculum levels and this is another important guide to the pupils' attainment and progress.
All Year 6 pupils will sit national curriculum SATS tests in English and Mathematics in the summer term. Parents receive full details of the test results, as well as teacher assessments, as part of the annual end of year report.
Key Stage 3
Year 7 and 8 pupils also work in ability sets and follow the new Key Stage 3 Framework for teaching Mathematics, which follows on from Key Stage 2. This course aims to develop pupils' knowledge of mathematical processes as well as giving opportunities to use and apply mathematics in more complex open-ended investigations.
The pupils begin the KS3 Mathematics Curriculum where the programme of study is taken from the National Numeracy Strategy and is tailored to the level of each set. We introduce students gradually to GCSE topics in Years 7 & 8 to build on their knowledge and understanding in preparation for Year 9. It is desirable that each pupil should have their own scientific calculator as they will be required in lessons and will become common place on the route through to studying GCSEs.
The pupils are set one homework per week which should last between 30 to 45 minutes dependent upon their set and year group. Many of the lessons in KS3 Maths are taught using an interactive whiteboard which makes many concepts clearer.
In addition to lessons, the school has subscribed to the ‘MyMaths’ website. Here students can be set homework to complete or guided to this resource for support with homework, enabling them to become a more independent learner. It can also be used as an extra-curricular tool to challenge students and reinforce mathematical concepts. Parents can also access the site in order to support their children.