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Yarborough Academy Mathematics Policy

Maths Philosophy

Mathematics is one of the core areas of the Yarborough project based and immersive curriculum. We believe that children at the early and primary phases should be taught the basic mathematical skills of solving problems, reasoning and fluency that will enable them to become confident mathematicians in further education and in everyday life. We use a range of pedagogical approaches to support how these basic skills are applied in a variety of contexts. We firmly believe we give the children the time and support to apply skills, deepen understanding and make mistakes in a safe environment by supporting each individual as they learn, grow and succeed.


The aims for teaching mathematics at Yarborough Academy are:

  • to promote enjoyment and curiosity of learning through practical activity, exploration, investigation and discussion in contexts with a real life purpose.
  • to develop an appreciation and love of mathematics.
  • to understand the importance of mathematics in everyday life.
  • to develop children’s ability to move between concrete, iconic and symbolic representations fluently and confidently.
  • to promote confidence and competence with understanding and using numbers and the number system;
  • to develop the ability to solve problems through decision-making and reasoning in a range of contexts, and other curriculum areas;
  • to develop a practical understanding of the ways in which information is gathered and presented;
  • to explore features of shape and space, and develop measuring skills in a range of contexts;
  • to enable children to select and use a range of mathematical tools effectively.
  • to equip children with the mathematical language needed to understand problems and explain their methods and reasoning.
  • to promote and provide opportunities for children to develop the core learning skills of confidence, determination, curiosity, aspiration, teamwork, independence, communication and focus.

Mathematics is an interconnected subject in which pupils need to be able to move fluently between representations of mathematical ideas. The curriculum is designed to enable pupils to make rich connections across mathematical ideas to develop fluency, mathematical reasoning and competence in solving increasingly sophisticated problems.

Classroom processes

Mathematics will be taught as part of each year groups project and maths will form a part of the project’s timeline. This will enable the pupils to use and apply mathematical skills and understanding to produce a cross curricular outcome with a real life purpose. Alongside this the pupils complete weekly (approximately) Mini Maths Missions. Although these run concurrently to the main project they still have a real life purpose and outcome. These are designed to ensure the whole of the Mathematics programme of study is covered throughout the school year. These Mini Maths Missions have a discrete daily slot and include a lesson starter in which number facts and oral and mental fluency are taught and explored. Workshops are then used by the class teacher to independently assess pupil’s ability and progress.

Teaching and learning style

Yarborough Academy is a Numicon Affiliate organisation and the pedagogy behind the Numicon approach understands that children learn best when moving from using concrete maths apparatus, pictorial representations (jottings, pictures, drawings etc.) and then abstract (signs and symbols). This is offered to the children alongside a number rich environment and is presented to the pupils in different ways, and so uses a variety of teaching styles in mathematics, adapting to the needs of the children as necessary and appropriate. During project sessions and Mini Maths Missions we encourage children to ask as well as answer mathematical questions. We develop their ability to independently select and use appropriate concrete apparatus to support their conceptual understanding and build procedural fluency. They have the opportunity to independently access and use a wide range of resources to support their learning. We develop the children’s ability to represent problems using visualisation skills, jottings and pictorial representations. Mathematical dictionaries are used where appropriate.

We aim for children to achieve mastery of the key areas and domains in Maths, narrowing the gap between the most and least able learners. We ensure that all mathematical opportunities, whether in project or in a Mini Maths Mission, are designed to provide exploration and depth in key concepts rather than moving pupils on to different content. The expectation is that the majority of pupils will move through the programmes of study at broadly the same pace. However, decisions about when to progress will always be based on the security of pupils’ understanding and their readiness to progress to the next stage. Pupils who grasp concepts rapidly will be challenged through being offered rich and sophisticated problems before being moved on to new content. Those who are not sufficiently fluent with key ideas will consolidate their understanding, through support from Teachers or Teaching Assistants, before moving on. We achieve this through a range of strategies, such as the use of differentiated work, booster programmes and SEN intervention programmes.

Early Years Foundation Stage

We teach mathematics in our Foundation Stage where we relate the mathematical aspects of the children’s work to the objectives set out in the Early Learning Goals, which underpin the curriculum planning for children during the Early Years Foundation Stage. We give all the children ample opportunity to develop their understanding of number, measurement, pattern, shape and space, through varied concrete and practical activities that allow them to enjoy, explore, practise and talk confidently about mathematics.

Maths Learning Environment

We aim to create a rich and stimulating number rich Maths environment that promotes learning and independence through Mini Maths Mission Working Walls in each classroom. Maths Working Walls and resource areas in the classroom will:

  • Support the children with their Maths.
  • Contain information relevant to current teaching (key vocabulary, models/images,  

Toolkits etc).

  • Include Maths resources clearly labelled and accessible for the children.
  • Be clear/large enough for children to read.

Home/school links

We aim to raise the profile and understanding of our approach to Maths with parents, and they are encouraged to be actively involved in supporting children’s learning in school in a number of ways: Weekly newsletters outlining current learning and how this can be supported at home and access to apps such as maths IXL to support current learning. There are also links to Maths websites and other useful documents and resources on the school website.

Assessment for learning

Learning, achievement and progress will be assessed and tracked in alignment with the academies assessment policy.

The role of the Subject Leader

The Mathematics Lead Teacher will:

  • Provide a strategic lead and direction for Mathematics in the school;
  • Provide support and advice to staff in the delivery of the Mathematics programme of study;
  • Remain informed about current developments in the subject by attending INSET sessions and being involved in independent research and reading;
  • Disseminate relevant information to staff;
  • Deliver INSET sessions to staff, to support staff development;
  • Monitor and evaluate the quality of the teaching and learning of Mathematics;
  • Monitor standards in the subject, through planning and work scrutiny, statistics, quality of teaching and pupil  


  • Order and maintain resources to enhance effectiveness of Maths teaching within the school;
  • Consider with staff and work with SLT members in the evaluation and planning of actions included within the School Development Plan.

The Class teacher will:

  • Be responsible for the teaching of Maths as set out in the policy.
  • Provide planning and reviews for the Head Teacher and Maths leader to have access to.
  • Provide samples of maths work to the Maths leader when required.
  • Assess children’s work in order to detail future planning.

Special needs provision, including gifted and talented

At our school we teach mathematics to all children, whatever their ability and individual needs. Mathematics forms part of the academy’s project based curriculum policy to provide a broad and balanced education to all children. Through our mathematics teaching we provide learning opportunities that enable all pupils to make good progress. We strive hard to meet the needs of disadvantaged and vulnerable children, including those pupils who generate Pupil Premium, those with special educational needs, those with disabilities, and those learning English as an additional language. We ensure learning is differentiated to meet the needs of all of our pupils and we take all reasonable steps to achieve this.