Tom Garry | Deputy Head Teacher
As a large primary school in South London we joined the Mathematics Mastery partnership in 2015. In 2017, Ofsted graded our school ‘Outstanding’ with inspectors commenting “Teaching enables pupils to master and gain a deep understanding of new skills and concepts in mathematics.”
Staff who have worked with the programme say it has helped to develop their maths knowledge. The face-to-face training and online videos are invaluable.
As a result of Mathematics Mastery training, our lessons focus more on deepening pupil’s understanding. The use of multiple representation is one example of how we make this happen. Multiple representations are used in lessons to develop children’s conceptual understanding. Teachers who taught maths before working with the Mathematics Mastery programme have noticed a clear difference in their pupils’ understanding. There are not so many gaps because children develop their understanding step-by-step and are able to keep up. They are also supported to articulate their understanding through sentence structure and practice.
We talk a lot about valuing mistakes and our children are quite resilient as a result. Each lesson starts off in a very accessible way and the fact that children can succeed, means they want to keep going. When children make mistakes, we take time to discuss what we can learn from them. The message is that getting it wrong is all part of learning.
Stronger understanding has a knock-on effect on the children’s attainment. In our first cohort of pupils learning through the Mathematics Mastery programme, the proportion of pupils working at or above the expected level in maths has risen from 68% to 79% in one year.
Importantly, our children certainly enjoy maths because they understand it. It’s part of our focus as a school: we try to teach them really well, so they understand well. And the enjoyment comes from that.
Then contact our friendly partnerships team who will be happy to talk you through the programmes and help you decide on the right approach for your school.
As teachers ourselves, we understand how extraordinarily difficult this period has been for all schools. We have made some important changes to our mastery programmes this year to help support you in the months ahead.