Castletown Community Primary School

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Maths Overview


At Castletown Primary we follow the National Curriculum for mathematics, which aims to ensure that all children:

  • 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 routine and non-routine problems with increasing sophistication, including breaking down problems into a series of simpler steps and persevering in seeking solutions.

Our intention is that:

  • Skills are embedded within a high-quality mathematics education taught from the earliest age and developed consistently over time through the delivery of an engaging and inspiring curriculum.
  • All children can be successful in the study of mathematics. We do not accept that ‘some children cannot do maths’ or that children should be limited by prior attainment. We aim to teach the skills to ensure that our children are resilient learners who become life-long mathematicians.
  • We are committed to ensuring that our children are able to recognise the importance of maths in the wider world and that they are able to apply their mathematical skills and knowledge confidently in their day to day lives and within a wide range of contexts.
  • All children enjoy maths and experience success in the subject, with the ability to problem solve and reason confidently. We are committed to developing children’s curiosity and discovery about the subject, as well as an appreciation of the beauty and power that can be found in the methodology, sequences and patterns of Mathematics.
  • Teachers promote children’s enjoyment of maths and provide opportunities for them to build a deep, conceptual understanding of maths before applying their knowledge to everyday problems and challenges.
  • Challenge is provided for all children, whatever their understanding. Children make rich connections across mathematical ideas to develop fluency, mathematical reasoning and competence in solving increasingly sophisticated problems.
  • Children apply their mathematical knowledge to science and other subjects.
  • 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 any acceleration through new content. Those who are not sufficiently fluent with earlier material will consolidate their understanding, through additional practice, before moving on.


  • To ensure consistent coverage, teachers follow the White Rose scheme of learning to support their planning. Teachers are encouraged to use resources from NRich and NCETM to support, stretch and challenge all children in their classroom. EYFS and KS1 staff deliver a weekly Mastering Number Programme through ongoing work with NCETM.
  • Staff deliver the maths curriculum with a focus on the concrete, pictorial, abstract approach. By using all three, children can explore, demonstrate and deepen their mathematical learning. Together, these elements help to cement knowledge so that children can truly understand and internalise what they have learnt.
  • When introduced to a new concept for the first time, children are encouraged to physically represent mathematical concepts. Objects and pictures are used to demonstrate and visualise abstract ideas, alongside numbers and symbols.  Three methods being used:

Concrete – children have the opportunity to use concrete objects and manipulatives to help them understand and explain what they are doing.

Pictorial – children build upon this concrete approach by using pictorial representations, which can be used to reason and solve problems.

Abstract – with the foundations firmly laid by using the concrete and pictorial methods, the children can move onto an abstract approach, using numbers and key concepts with growing confidence.

  • Regular and ongoing assessment informs teaching, as well as intervention, to support and enable the success of every child.


  • Teachers use formative assessment to evaluate learning during the lesson. They will ask questions to check understanding and scrutinise independent work in order to identify common misconceptions. Such assessment allows teachers the flexibility to intervene in a lesson to remind, redirect or re-teach pupils as required.
  • Purposeful and self marking of independent work allows teachers greater understanding of whether or not a concept has been grasped and gives the opportunity to provide praise and feedback in order to reinforce learning. It also allows them to reflect on how successful they were in the delivery of their lesson.
  • Formal end of unit White Rose tests, used alongside termly summative assessments, allow teachers to evaluate how individuals, groups and the class as a whole are progressing compared to national expectations. They also provide excellent opportunities to see which concepts need to be given additional time – planning will be adjusted accordingly. This gives the Maths Leader and Senior Leadership the insight to see where the strengths and weaknesses lie, where additional support needs to be focused and what training/ CPD requirements are.
  • The mathematics leader works closely with the Local Authority advisor who offers guidance and mathematical updates as and when required.
  • The combination of all of these systems allows us to judge the impact of the maths curriculum in our school.

Principle Focus


At Castletown Primary the principal focus of mathematics teaching in EYFS is outlined within the 2021 EYFS framework. We support our pupils to develop a strong grounding in number so that all develop the necessary building blocks to excel mathematically. Our pupils should be able to count confidently, develop a deep understanding of the numbers to 10, the relationships between them and the patterns within these numbers. We provide our pupils with opportunities to build and apply this understanding through the use a range of manipulatives including the use of tens frames and opportunities for them to organise counting. We also aim to develop our pupils knowledge base, including vocabulary, from which mastery of mathematics is built. We also aim to provide a curriculum that develops their spacial reasoning skills including Shape, Space and Measure. We recognise the importance of pupils developing a positive attitude and interest in mathematics that enables them to gain confidence in the subject whilst instilling a 'have a go' attitude and not being afraid to make mistakes. Our EYFS pupils are encouraged to talk to adults and their peers about what they notice.

Key Stage 1

At Castletown Primary the principal focus of mathematics teaching in key stage 1 is to ensure that all of our  pupils develop confidence and mental fluency with whole numbers, counting and place value. This involves working with numerals, words and the four operations, including with practical resources [for example, concrete objects and measuring tools]. At this stage, pupils should develop their ability to recognise, describe, draw, compare and sort different shapes and use the related vocabulary. Teaching should also involve using a range of measures to describe and compare different quantities such as length, mass, capacity/volume,
time and money. By the end of year 2, pupils should know the number bonds to 20 and be precise in using and
understanding place value. An emphasis on practice at this early stage helps to aid fluency. Pupils are expected to read and spell mathematical vocabulary, at a level consistent with their increasing word reading and spelling knowledge at key stage 1.

Key Stage 2

Lower key Stage 2 : At Castletown Primary the principal focus of mathematics teaching in lower key stage 2 is to ensure that our pupils become increasingly fluent with whole numbers and the four operations, including number facts and the concept of place value. This should ensure that pupils develop efficient written and mental methods and perform calculations accurately with increasingly large whole numbers. At this stage, pupils should develop their ability to solve a range of problems, including with simple fractions and decimal place value. Teaching should also ensure that pupils draw with increasing accuracy and develop mathematical reasoning so they can analyse shapes and their properties, and confidently describe the relationships between them. It should ensure that they can use measuring instruments with accuracy and make connections between measure and number. By the end of year 4, pupils should have memorised their multiplication tables up to and including the 12 multiplication table and show precision and fluency in their work. Pupils should read and spell mathematical vocabulary correctly and confidently, using their growing word reading knowledge and their knowledge of spelling.

Upper Key Stage 2 : At Castletown Primary the principal focus of mathematics teaching in upper key stage 2 is to ensure that our pupils extend their understanding of the number system and place value to include larger integers. This should develop the connections that pupils make between multiplication and division with fractions, decimals, percentages and ratio. At this stage, pupils should develop their ability to solve a wider range of problems, including increasingly complex properties of numbers and arithmetic, and problems demanding efficient written and mental methods of calculation. With this foundation in arithmetic, pupils are introduced to the language of algebra as a means for solving a variety of problems. Teaching in geometry and measures should consolidate and extend knowledge developed in number. Teaching should also ensure that pupils classify shapes with increasingly complex geometric properties and that they learn the vocabulary they need to describe them. By the end of year 6, pupils should be fluent in written methods for all four operations, including long multiplication and division, and in working with fractions, decimals and percentages. Pupils should read, spell and pronounce mathematical vocabulary correctly.