We aim to develop a matched curriculum of mathematics where all children can develop a deeper understanding of mathematical concepts, building upon solid foundations (Early Learning Goals), as they move through The Orchards School. All children will be confident learners and demonstrate a ‘can do’ attitude towards mathematical thinking; in turn, creating resilience and rigour as they make sustained progress over a period of time. 


  1. The key ideas behind ‘mastery in mathematics’ is that all pupils need a deep understanding of the mathematics they are learning so that future mathematical learning is built on solid foundations which not need to be retaught but revised.
  2. Our children are encouraged to develop a growth mind-set and have a ‘can do’ attitude to mathematics for all pupils. A set of positive norms for the mathematics classroom are established including: the use of ‘yet’; depth of understanding before speed; the answer is only the beginning; mistakes are valued and making connections is important. 
  3. Staff do not label pupils or place a ceiling on children’s attainment. 
  4. We believe that all children can achieve a good level of the key ideas within mathematics and our staff understand that maths is not a fixed continuum. 
  5. Our school believes that lessons should be based around small steps of learning and that the key ideas are building blocks for everyone. We feel that more time needs to be spent on teaching key mathematical ideas and concepts to allow for the development of depth and sufficient practice to embed learning. 
  6. Together, we feel that the class can work together on the same point, whilst at the same time challenging and supporting pupils to gain a depth of understanding and proficiency. Differentiation is achieved as rapid graspers are challenged through more demanding problems which deepen their knowledge of the same content rather than being moved onto content from future years groups‘(Differentiation by Depth)’. Pupils’ difficulties and misconceptions are identified through immediate formative assessment and addressed with rapid intervention the same day (where possible). 
  7. Classroom practice will use carefully chosen concrete and pictorial representations help build procedural and conceptual knowledge together. Possible solutions are shared, analysed and discussed to deepen understanding (‘the answer is only the beginning)’. Teachers will use precise questioning during lessons to ensure that pupils develop fluent technical proficiency and think deeply about the underpinning mathematical concepts.  
  8. Mastery lessons are 45-55 minutes with an extended opportunity beyond mastery curriculum time for calculation and fluency.
  9. Our teachers have access to high quality resources to support lesson planning (e.g. maths text books, schemes of work, medium term planning to identify small steps of learning).
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