Belfast Street, Hove, East Sussex, BN3 3YT

01273 770082

St. Andrew's CofE (aided) Primary School

Inspire a love of learning and enjoy 'life in all its fullness', ensuring that everyone can flourish and be the best they can be. John 10:10


Here at St Andrew’s School we follow a maths mastery approach. We aim to promote children’s curiosity and enable them to safely take risks and learn from first-hand experience wherever necessary. Our primary focus is to support the children to become fluent in mathematical understanding from the most basic level so that they can build upon their own understanding. We aim to enable our children to develop conceptual understanding, recall of number facts and patterns and to apply their knowledge rapidly and accurately. We aim to promote children’s ability to reason through opportunities to discuss their thinking and understanding. We promote problem solving and solution finding.

Watch the video with Miss Challis below to find out more about how we teach maths at our school

What is teaching for mastery?

Mastering maths means pupils acquiring a deep, long-term, secure and adaptable understanding of the subject. The phrase ‘teaching for mastery’ describes the elements of classroom practice and school organisation that combine to give pupils the best chance of mastering maths. Achieving mastery means acquiring a solid enough understanding of the maths that has been taught to enable pupils to move on to more advanced materials.

How does this look at our school?

We learn together....

At St. Andrew’s, where possible, the whole class is taught maths together and moves through topics and concepts at broadly the same pace. We spend more time on key topics and concept to ensure learning is well developed and deeply embedded before moving on. We believe that the vast majority of children can succeed in learning mathematics in line with national expectations. The learning needs of individuals are addressed through careful scaffolding, questioning and appropriate intervention where necessary, to provide the appropriate support and challenge. Same day intervention is used to support slower graspers and to address misconceptions. We challenge children by asking them to explore concepts deeply through verbal reasoning and our 'diving deep' and 'diving deeper' questions. 

We use representations…
We use the CPA (concrete, pictorial and abstract) approach to support out teaching of
mathematics. The children are given concrete apparatus (things they can touch, hold and manipulate) and visual representations (things they can see) to help them visualise and internalise mathematical concepts. This allows them to access, conceptualise and solve problems. Through the use of these apparatus and representation, our pupils gain
confidence as independent learners to use resources and solve problems. Here is more detail on the CPA approach:

Concrete Representation: Children first introduced to using objects.
Pictorial Representation: When a child has understood the ‘hands-on’ experience, they can now relate them to representations such as a diagram or picture.
Abstract Representation: The child is now capable or representing problems using mathematical notation.

Without the ‘hands on’ and pictorial steps, this can be very hard for children to understand.