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Maths Curriculum - Intent

At St Mary Magdalen's, we follow a 'mastery approach' to teaching mathematics; an inclusive method based on our firm belief that all our children can be masters of mathematics.

Our curriculum provides pupils with a deep understanding of the subject through a concrete, pictorial and abstract approach to help them solve the problems found in lessons and in everyday life.

We aim to teach maths in a way that promotes a love of the subject and enables our children to see how it is applicable to their lives now and in the future.  We encourage our learning values of creative thinking, perseverance, communication, teamwork and questioning to ensure high standards of achievement and success for all our children.

There are many elements to the teaching and learning of mathematics: it is not only the ability to calculate (being mathematically fluent) but also the ability to apply these skills to real-life (solving problems and investigating) and also to talk confidently with knowledge about mathematical working (reasoning).



Mathematics is taught through three key areas of mastery, as set by the National Curriculum so pupils:

  • become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics, including through varied and frequent practice with increasingly complex problems over time, so that pupils develop conceptual understanding and the ability to recall and apply knowledge rapidly and accurately;
  • reason mathematically by following a line of enquiry, conjecturing relationships and generalisations, and developing an argument, justification or proof using mathematical language;
  • can solve problems by applying their mathematics to a variety of problems with increasing sophistication, including breaking down problems into a series of simpler steps and persevering in seeking solutions.

We believe that our regular arithmetic sessions promote confidence in mathematical fluency along with times table knowledge.  

We place great emphasis on reasoning and vocabulary to equip children with the tools to explain their reasoning.

To ensure continuity and progression in the teaching of mathematics, we use the White Rose Maths sequences of work.

National Curriculum for Maths

Please click here for the guidance document from the DfE.


It is important that children have a secure understanding of each mathematical concept before moving on.  At St Mary Magdalen's, we ensure that the children have mastered the maths in every lesson with teachers using assessment for learning alongside identifying and addressing any misconceptions as and when they arise.

Teachers and teaching assistants deliver targeted maths interventions and boosters based on assessment of the work produced to ensure all children are ready to move on.

Children are regularly assessed on the content taught and we also use NfER tests as a summative assessment to monitor overall progress in mathematics.


In all classes, it is usually expected that the majority of pupils will move through the programme of study, focusing on objectives from their year group.  However, decisions about when to progress are always based on the depth of the pupil's understanding and their readiness to progress to the next stage.  Pupils who grasp concepts rapidly are challenged through sophisticated problems.

Teachers carefully utilise scaffolding techniques to support all pupils, including those who need pre-teaching prior to a lesson or short sessions after a lesson to ensure understanding or address misconceptions.

White Rose Maths

The learning for each year group is split into a number of learning blocks which cover all the appropriate mathematics objectives. Each concept within a block is then split into a series of small steps in order to consolidate the pupils’ conceptual understanding.The schemes ensure an integrated approach to the National Curriculum of mathematics aims of fluency, reasoning and problem solving. 

Progression in Primary

Please click here for guidance document explaining how the White Rose maths curriculum links to the KS1 and KS2 National Curriculum and how it progresses through topics. 

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