Valued – Inspired – Prepared
Westhaven School is a unique learning environment with high expectations for learners who experience barriers to learning for a range of reasons. We promote a calm environment which enables everyone to learn. The golden thread that permeates our curriculum and our conduct through every school day are the core values which shape our learners to be:
- safely independent
- confident communicators
- respectful citizens
- resilient learners
- inquisitive thinkers
The Westhaven Way is our ethos and it underpins our daily approach to behaviour and learning.
Westhaven School’s Mathematics Strategy and Intent
How our values shape everything we do…
Our intent in teaching mathematics at Westhaven is to encourage a love of the subject, yes, but ultimately to also empower our learners with the confidence and knowledge to function confidently in the world around them. We want our learners to be able to live, eat and shop well, spend and budget wisely. We want them to be able to manage their finances and homes, fill in forms and have a secure understanding of our banking systems. We want them to be able to tell the time, read timetables and to navigate maps to open up the world of travel to them.
It would be wonderful to see our learners move past Key Stage 4 and pursue a career involving maths, but for many just securing basic functional skills maths is more a reality and, certainly, a necessity.
At Westhaven School, we believe mathematics is an important part of children’s development throughout school, right from an early age. We intend on delivering a curriculum which allows our learners to become safely independent.
Learners will be a part of creative and engaging lessons that will give them a range of opportunities to explore mathematics following a mastery curriculum approach.
The curriculum makes rich connections across mathematical ideas to develop fluency, mathematical reasoning and competence in solving increasingly sophisticated problems.
At Westhaven we give each learner a chance to believe in themselves as mathematicians and develop the power of resilience and perseverance when faced with mathematical challenges.
Our learners have become used to regular informal assessments, sensitively given with allowances made for their additional needs. Our learners also receive live instant marking in every lesson and have become accustomed to the learning journey of correctly any errors or misconceptions during a lesson.
Our learners recognise that mathematics underpins much of our daily lives and therefore is of paramount importance in order that children aspire and become successful in the next stages of their learning.
Our mathematics aims to engage all children and entitles them to the same quality of teaching and learning opportunities, striving to achieve their potential, as they belong to our school community.
As our learners master the core number skills they will gain the confidence to transfer their maths knowledge in other subjects and into their life outside of school. The maths curriculum provides equal opportunities for learners to apply their mathematical knowledge to other subjects with cross-curricular links.
Within school, at the start of each new topic, key vocabulary is introduced and revisited regularly to develop language acquisition, embedding as the topic progresses. We have developed vocabulary mats for each maths topic and these will be available to the learners in their lessons.
The Westhaven Maths curriculum is in line with the expectations in the National Curriculum. However, the number strand is given great importance at Westhaven as it underpins all maths development and supports learners to become more independent with their mastery of the topics of money and time.
Our mathematics curriculum in Early Years Foundation Stage, Key Stage 1, 2 and 3 follows the White Rose scheme of learning which has been adapted to suit the needs of our learners. This will include over learning, breaking tasks into small steps, using a range of mathematical manipulatives and weekly fluency practise.
At Key Stage 4, the maths curriculum is linked to the qualification studied. These are Entry Levels 1, 2 and 3, Functional Skills and GCSE Mathematics.
At Key Stage 5 the learners will follow an innovative new scheme of learning called Maths for Life. The Maths For Life programme provides a differentiated approach to the maths curriculum that lays down solid foundations, is framed in practical understanding, and delivers the essential maths needed for life. This has been proven to improve overall mathematical attainment and increase independence. This learning will be accredited by an AQA Unit Award.
Our approach to the curriculum is designed to develop children’s knowledge and understanding of mathematical concepts from the Early Years through to the end of Year 9, before they move onto their qualification syllabus in Year 10 and 11.
Learners in the Foundation Stage through to Key Stage 2 are taught in mixed ability tutor groups and have 5 lessons a week. In Key Stage 3 most learners will continue to learn in their tutor groups but we will also offer a higher ability stream for learners who are on the GCSE pathway.
Learners in Key Stage 4 are taught in streamed groups according to the level of qualification they are studying and have 4 lessons a week. In Key Stage 5 learners have 3 hours of maths per week.
In school, we follow the national curriculum and use our own Schemes of Work as a guide to support teachers with their planning and assessment.
The calculation policy is used within the school to ensure a consistent approach to teaching the four operations over time.
Children are taught through clear modelling and have the opportunity to develop their knowledge and understanding of mathematical concepts. The mastery approach incorporates using objects, pictures, words and numbers to help children explore and demonstrate mathematical ideas, enrich their learning experience and deepen understanding at all levels.
Concrete – children have the opportunity to use concrete objects and manipulatives to help them understand and explain what they are doing.
Pictorial – children then build on this concrete approach by using pictorial representations, which can then be used to reason and solve problems.
Abstract – With the foundations firmly laid, children can move to an abstract approach using numbers and key concepts with confidence.
Leadership, Assessment and Feedback
Feedback is given on children’s learning in line with our feedback policy. Formative assessment within every lesson helps teachers to identify the children who need more support to achieve the intended outcome and who are ready for greater stretch and challenge through planned questioning or additional activities.
At the end of each topic the learners will complete an informal assessment. In addition to this, three times a year, the learners will complete a more comprehensive assessment which will assess long term knowledge and skills retention .
The maths leader has a clear role and overall responsibility for the progress of all children in maths throughout school. Working with the Governing Body, key data is analysed and regular feedback is provided, to inform on progress and future actions.
Learners’ work is marked during lessons; this enables teachers to assess continually and to act on any misconceptions quickly. Data captures also take place in terms 2, 4 and 6 and there is a termly mathematics meeting for all teachers and subject leaders. This is an opportunity to discuss the progress of learners and to identify any trends or intervention needs.
At Key Stage 4 and 5, learners are assessed according to the qualification they are following. These assessments are closely monitored by the mathematics lead and we strive to ensure that all learners achieve the best outcomes possible for them both in terms of qualifications achieved and skills and knowledge to help them thrive in future life.
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