Diamond Maths at Diamond Wood is truly unique…
The Government said “The phrase ‘teaching for mastery’ describes the elements of classroom practice and school organisation that combine to give pupils the best chances of mastering maths. Achieving mastery means acquiring a solid enough understanding of the maths that’s been taught to enable pupils to move on to more advanced material.”
Diamond Wood Community Academy says:
Make it hands on, using a concrete, pictorial abstract approach
Ask challenging questions to deepen children’s understanding to solve reasoning problems
Teach using visual stimulus and images to support
Have enthusiasm and expertise to captivate, absorb and enthral our young minds
Sculpt and create an environment rich in resilience, collaboration and mathematical talk to embed learning.
As a school we have been on quite a journey and Maths at Diamond Wood Community Academy is one of our greatest successes.
In 2015, as a whole-school approach to teaching mathematics, we undertook a Mathematics Mastery programme in order to raise attainment for all pupils. The programme aimed to deepen pupils’ conceptual understanding of key mathematical concepts and have greater emphasis placed on problem solving and on encouraging mathematical thinking.
A chunked-up lesson structure ensured prior knowledge is revisited, an opportunity for children to use the CPA model to promote understanding and arithmetic sessions to develop speed and fluency. At Diamond Wood these changes were embraced whole-heartedly with a positive, 'I can, we can' attitude that allowed our team to have confidence in delivering inspiring maths lessons.
Diamond Wood work hard to promote a vision of “a place to grow, a place to shine” in every aspect of the mathematics curriculum. Teaching lessons that allowed the children and staff to experience, explore and work in all areas, including the forest.
We work together to allow children to not have any restrictions on resources. This included pooling together real life objects to support problem solving, gathering real life food for children to slice in order to understand fractions and even line-dancing to Billy Ray Cyrus’ “achy breaky heart” for children to grasp position and direction.
“Teaching maths in different, exciting ways not only develops deep and holistic understanding but inspires our children to constantly strive to learn” Year 1 Teacher
Currently, we guide children to see math as an accessible, valuable tool that helps them understand, describe, and have more control over the world in which they live. We offer our children experiences that inspire them to want to question, and analyse things around them. We provide focused sessions that supports language and the reading mathematical problems. From these opportunities we will want to see our pupils as curious and creative individuals who can be encouraged to explore maths with energy and excitement.
Our Maths Intent
Diamond Wood Community Academy serves a community where 98% of the children have English as an additional language. Language is therefore at the heart of all that we do and is an integral part to our topics.
At Diamond Wood our approach to Mathematics promotes a deep understanding alongside a recognition of the need for fluency in everyday number skills. Maths lessons are characterised by the promotion of mathematical vocabulary, reasoning and the consistent use of the CPA model to ensure pupils have the confidence in key concepts being taught.
By the time children will leave us in Year 2 we want our children to have had a high-quality mathematics education that provides a foundation for understanding the world, the ability to reason mathematically, an appreciation of the beauty and power of mathematics, and a sense of enjoyment and curiosity about the subject.
Our Maths curriculum is aimed to deepen pupils’ conceptual understanding of key mathematical concepts and have greater emphasis placed on problem solving and on encouraging mathematical thinking. A chunked-up lesson structure ensures prior knowledge is revisited, an opportunity for children to use the CPA model to promote understanding and arithmetic sessions to develop speed and fluency. Whilst, we interconnect and immerse children in mathematical language which aids them to develop a deep, long-term, secure and adaptable understanding of the subject.
We intend to provide all children regardless of ethnic origin, gender, class, aptitude or disability, with a broad and balanced maths curriculum.
Our Maths ethos is designed to give all pupils, the opportunity for a broad, balanced and holistic approach to maths which includes many learning experiences, underpinned by developing thinking and communication.
Our school is committed to serving its community and surrounding areas. We recognise the multi-cultural, multi-faith nature of the United Kingdom and understand the crucial role our school plays in promoting fundamental British Values. In Maths we support this by encouraging children to respect and value the opinions of others and promote tolerance and understanding. As a predominantly Muslim community, with increasing Eastern European influence, we try to develop an awareness of both the history of maths alongside the realisation that many topics we still learn today have travelled across the world and are used internationally.
Our Maths Curriculum: Position Statement
As a school we have been on quite a journey with our Maths curriculum and at Diamond Wood Community Academy we consider it to be one of our greatest successes.
This academic year, we will continue to develop our curriculum further and continue to aim to deepen pupils’ conceptual understanding of key mathematical concepts and have greater emphasis on problem solving and on encouraging mathematical thinking. Coupled together with children immersing in mathematical language and talk which is essential to everyday life and therefore provides a foundation for understanding our world.
Our main focus for the year in terms of our Maths curriculum is to review current content and coverage to ensure progression of knowledge and skills throughout school, from Nursery to Year Two.
We quickly identified the gaps created in children’s mathematical knowledge and understanding due to COVID-19 school closures and our adapted recovery curriculum aims to continue to provide our children with rich vocabulary-based lessons, where experience and language equip all pupils with the skills and confidence to solve a range of problems through fluency with numbers and mathematical reasoning.
As a school we understand that all teaching and learning is carried out by use of language and ultimately teaching and learning the language of mathematics is vital for the development of mathematical proficiency. In order to support this, practitioners are encouraged to discuss and expand children’s understanding of mathematics through the exposure of key language within each Maths lesson. Furthermore, dedicated Maths Working Walls and high-quality guided reasoning sessions within classrooms strengthen the use of key vocabulary and understanding of skills.
We are passionate about giving our children opportunities and we believe learning Maths through the CPA approach develops a deep and lasting understanding of procedure and key concepts whilst feeling safe and engaged. This is why we are changing our Early Years Maths structure to include this, to create a cohesive progression throughout Diamond Wood to ensure every child within school gets this opportunity.