Mathematics

Mathematics is essential to everyday life, critical to science, technology and engineering, and necessary for financial literacy and most forms of employment.  At The Richmond School we believe that all children can achieve in Mathematics whilst becoming fluent, resilient and reflective when exploring concepts. We use Maths No Problem - an approach to teaching maths developed in Singapore.

Singapore established a new way of teaching maths following their poor performance in international league tables in the early 1980’s. The Singapore Ministry of Education, decided to take the best practice research findings from the West and applied them to the classroom with transformational results.

Problem solving is at the heart of Maths No Problem. The focus is not on rote procedures, rote memorisation or tedious calculations but on relational understanding. Pupils are encouraged to solve problems working with their core competencies, such as visualisation, generalisation and decision making. In summary:
  • Based on research and evidence.
  • It builds students’ mathematical fluency without the need for rote learning.
  • It introduces new concepts using Bruner’s Concrete Pictorial Abstract (CPA) approach.
  • Pupils learn to think mathematically as opposed to reciting formulas they don’t understand.
  • Teaches mental strategies to solve problems such as drawing a bar model.

How are lessons taught?

Concepts merge from one chapter to the next. Chapters are then broken down into individual lessons. Lessons typically are broken into three parts and can last one or more days. Pupils master topics before moving on.

The three parts to a lesson are:
  1. Anchor Task – the entire class spends time on a question guided by the teacher. The children are encouraged during this time to think of as many ways as possible to solve the question as possible.
  2. Guided Practice – practice new ideas in groups, pairs or individually guided by the teacher.
  3. Independent Practice – practice on your own. Once children have mastered the concept they use their reasoning and problem solving skills to develop their depth of learning.

What impact will Singapore Maths have on our children? 

  • Children will have a greater conceptual understanding of number and calculation. They will be able to visualise and generalise more readily due to a more in-depth understanding.
  • Struggling learners will be fully supported through accessing concrete equipment and use of visual models to support understanding.
  • Confident learners will be challenged through exposure to unfamiliar problems, development of reasoning skills and by exploring multiple ways to manipulate numbers and solve problems.
  • All learners will access teaching of content which matches the expectations of the new curriculum in England and be supported further, if needed, in order to access this. The resources match the expectations for formal written methods set out by the Government, alongside greater understanding.

What is covered when?

What else do we offer in maths?

Times Table Rockstars
Times Table Rockstars is an online game that helps children become fluent in their times tables. Children create their own avatar to become a rock star, navigating their way through a variety of different rockstar battles to build their speed and knowledge of their multiplication facts whilst earning coins to buy themselves items for their character. Children compete against each other on the 'Rock speed' leader board and we compare our average to that of other local schools. When children achieve a rock speed under 1 second, they receive their 'Rock Hero' status and certificate in our celebration service on a Friday!

Maths Blast
Three times a week children will have a 'Maths Blast' session with their class teacher for around 20 minutes. These sessions are to revise concepts that have already been taught, to support teachers to assess what children can do while they attempt activities not at the point of teaching in normal Maths lessons. It also allows children to revise and re-visit concepts and receive support if they need this. Maths Blast will usually have children working on their fluency with calculation or fact recall activities but these may be adapted by teachers to match the specific needs of each class or group.