At Holy Trinity, children study mathematics daily, covering a broad and balanced mathematics curriculum including elements of number, calculation, geometry, measures and statistics. Alongside daily maths sessions, an additional Times Tables lesson is taught for children in Year 2 and above.
Children from year 2 upwards will complete a ‘morning challenge’ that will focus on addition, subtraction, division and fractions, this supports the process of building fluency and precision in these areas. We focus not only on the mathematical methods as seen in the calculation policy but also focus on mathematical vocabulary.
The calculation policy and yearly overviews follow a mastery approach, using White Rose as a basis. At Holy Trinity, we all have the shared vision that every child has the potential to succeed. They should have access to the same curriculum content and, rather than being extended with new learning, they should deepen their conceptual understanding by tackling challenging and varied problems.
The teaching of mathematics follows the CPA (Concrete, Pictorial and Abstract) approach as demonstrated in the calculation policy.
Concrete is the “doing” stage. During this stage, pupils use concrete objects to model problems. The CPA approach brings concepts to life by allowing children to experience and handle physical (concrete) objects. With the CPA framework, every abstract concept is first introduced using physical, interactive concrete materials.
For example, if a problem involves adding pieces of fruit, children can first handle actual fruit. From there, they can progress to handling abstract counters or cubes which represent the fruit.
Pictorial is the “seeing” stage. Here, visual representations of concrete objects are used to model problems. This stage encourages children to make a mental connection between the physical object they have just handled and the abstract pictures, diagrams or models that represent the objects from the problem.
Building or drawing a model makes it easier for children to grasp difficult abstract concepts (for example, fractions). Simply put, it helps students visualise abstract problems and make them more accessible.
Abstract is the “symbolic” stage, where children use abstract symbols to model problems. Students will not progress to this stage until they have demonstrated that they have a solid understanding of the concrete and pictorial stages of the problem. The abstract stage involves the teacher introducing abstract concepts (for example, mathematical symbols). Children are introduced to the concept at a symbolic level, using only numbers, notation and mathematical symbols (for example, +, –, x, /) to indicate addition, subtraction, multiplication or division.