Teaching of Maths

Mathematics is creative and inter-connected. It is essential to everyday life. Therefore in Beam, Mathematics is taught in daily lessons that are linked to the objectives in the National Curriculum and as part of other lessons. Our teaching aims to ensure that all our pupils learn how to:

  • Solve problems
  • Reason mathematically
  • Become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics


To help our pupils solve problems we provide challenging lessons in which the children need to apply their mathematics to a variety of both routine calculations and non-routine problems that become increasingly sophisticated at skills grow. Our teaching aims to develop children’s mathematical thinking so that they become able to break down problems into simpler steps and become learners who persevere in seeking solutions.

To ensure pupils learn to reason mathematically, lessons are planned that allow children to follow a line of enquiry, look for patterns and conjecture about relationships, develop and make arguments and provide justifications for their ideas. These require pupils to make and justify decisions so TALK is central to the teaching and learning. To support effective talk for learning ,our teaching places a high level of focus on the correct and precise use of mathematical vocabulary by teachers and pupils.

Because we aim to make sure pupils become fluent in the basics of mathematics our lessons in Beam include varied and frequent practice. Basic mathematical knowledge will be taught and revisited through application to increasingly complex problems over time. We teach this way so pupils develop conceptual understanding and the ability to both quickly recall and apply knowledge accurately.

We have set out our mathematics curriculum on a year by year basis. Pupils will mostly move through the programme at a similar pace. However there is an expectation that we will follow the pupil not the plan: securing understanding then progressing when ready. This means providing challenge with rich and sophisticated problems before any acceleration through new content. It also means consolidating understanding for those not sufficiently fluent before moving on. To help us make our teaching responsive to learning needs children are grouped within classes according to ability; but these groups are often changed according to individual strengths and weaknesses across the main aspects of numeracy. In Mathematics lessons for older pupils we also group in the same way across the classes in a year group.

Central to our teaching is the type of ongoing assessment that is possible through our well-structured classroom activities involving interaction and dialogue. This high quality talk for learning is between teacher and pupils but is also between pupils themselves. Tasks may be in written form but are frequently presented orally, using equipment or as part of a group activity.

Considerable importance is attached to our children achieving a deep understanding of the content taught each year. This results in sustainable knowledge and the skills that are essential to everyday life.