At Holy Family School we aim to create a sense of excitement and curiosity around mathematics. Children are encouraged to make links between what they are learning and the world around them. A high-quality maths education provides the foundation for understanding of the world. Maths is essential to everyday life and necessary in almost all forms of employment.

During lessons children are introduced to the processes of calculation through a wide range of practical, mental and oral activities. The use of images and practical equipment is central to introduce number concepts and methods of calculation, including both mental and informal methods. Children are encouraged to verbally explain what they are doing before they record any calculation.

Although written methods allow children to solve problems involving larger numbers; the ability to calculate mentally is of equal importance. Mental calculations should complement written recording. It is important that children do not abandon jottings and mental methods once written methods are introduced. Therefore, children should always be encouraged to look at a calculation and decide the best method to choose – picture; mental calculation with or without jotting; written method or calculator. They need to decide:

 Can I do this mentally in my head?

 Can I do this in my head alongside using a picture or a jotting?

 Do I need to use a written method?

 Do I need to use a calculator?

 Strategies are taught in a progressive order, linking to the 2014 National Curriculum. Teachers take into account the children’s stage of mathematical development to ensure that they have a sound understanding of the mathematics and not just a mechanical method for finding an answer. In order for all children to receive the appropriate level of challenge it may be necessary to extend children with the later stages, after they have demonstrated a clear mastery of the key skills. Whilst for other children, it may be necessary to further reinforce earlier stages of calculation.

The following websites will help you to support your child at home.

Please ask their class teacher for advice on areas that they need to develop further.

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