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At Mersey Drive Community Primary School we aim to equip all pupils with the skills and confidence to solve a range of problems through fluency with numbers and mathematical reasoning.  Children are encouraged to see the mathematics that surround them every day and enjoy developing vital life skills in this subject.


Fluency – Reasoning – Problem Solving.

Key aspects of Mathematics Teaching:


  • Whole class together – we teach mathematics to whole classes and do not set children. Lessons are planned based on formative assessment looking at what students already know and we include all children in learning mathematical concepts.  At the planning stage, teachers consider the scaffolding that may be required for children struggling to grasp concepts in the lesson and suitable challenge questions for those who may grasp the concepts rapidly. In line with NCETM advice, one form of depth frequently used during the first part of the lesson, is variation theory (conceptual and procedural). Variation is one of the five ‘big ideas’ at the heart of Teaching for Mastery. For example, a child who can produce a quick correct answer may be asked to solve the question using more than one other procedure, to represent the question in more than one way (such as the bar model or part whole).
  • All children engaged through manipulatives on table, use of whiteboards, partner talk
  • Longer but deeper – in order to ensure children have a secure and deep understanding of the content taught, our plans have been adjusted to allow longer on topics and we move more slowly through the curriculum. We use Power Maths planning to support progression and variation.  Teachers adapt each lesson to meet the needs of their children and add extra questioning / tasks which will allow children to learn the content more deeply.  The learning will focus on one key conceptual idea and connections are made across mathematical topics.  It may appear that the pace of the lesson is slower, but progress and understanding is enhanced.
  • Key learning points are identified during planning and a clear journey through the maths should be shown through our planning. Learning points may appear to be very small but this is deliberate.  For example, a whole lesson may be spent on adding the ones to a 3-digit number.  The expectation is that every child will master the concept and some children will work more deeply on the same concept using variation theory and challenge tasks.
  • Questions will probe pupil understanding throughout, taking some children’s learning deeper. Responses are expected in full sentences, using precise mathematical vocabulary.   Stem sentences will used, wherever possible, to support understanding, recall and build key terminology.
  • Fluency – there is a whole school focus on developing an instant recall of key facts, such as number bonds, times tables, division facts, addition and subtraction facts.
  • Reasoning and deep understanding (contexts and representations of mathematics) – problems are often set in real life contexts – carefully chosen practical resources and pictorial representations are used to explore concepts. These pictorial representations will appear in books as children show their understanding.  The use of practical resources, pictorial representations and recording takes place (the CPA approach).
  • Discussion and feedback – pupils have opportunities to talk to their partners and explain/clarify their thinking.


At Mersey Drive we follow Power Maths as our main scheme for progression and coverage.  Our Calculation Guides show the representations and methods used in each year group.


Please click HERE to view our Reception Calculation Policy. Please click HERE to view our KS1 Calculation Policy Please click HERE to view our Lower KS2 Calculation Policy Please click HERE to view our Upper KS2 Calculation Policy