“Maths is everywhere and its processes are for learning about life” (Les Staves, 2019)
Through the teaching of Maths, we aim to enable our pupils to explore, investigate and understand their environment and make sense of the world around them, initially through schemas and later through the application of functional number and problem solving skills.
The National Curriculum (2014) identifies the three areas of Mathematics as being; Using and applying Mathematics, Number and Shape, Space and Measures but there are great number of pre-subject specific skills that our pupils need to develop in order to obtain the knowledge needed to access this formal maths curriculum.
To develop mathematical skills all children need rich opportunities to communicate in play and in their daily lives as the first steps in developing emergent mathematical skills. At High Park, emergent mathematical skills are taught through activities that provide pupils with repeated opportunities to respond consistently to familiar people, events and objects; be proactive in their interactions and communicate intentionally. Pupils are taught the key, early mathematical skills of cause and effect, object permanence, problem solving, spatial awareness, perseverance and mathematical language that are fundamental to developing competency in mathematics.
When these fundamentals of emergent skills are successfully in place pupils have a greater understanding of number and can learn to use numbers a functional, representational way.
Pupils are given given a wide range of opportunities to explore and compare objects, materials and events; comparing differences and similarities, noticing the relationships and connections between things and using this knowledge to further guide their learning. Les Staves (2019) identifies what he calls the “roots” of mathematical learning. Opportunities to engage in”physical sensory experiences” of space, movement, sequence, time and quantities are embedded into our school day through a cross-curricular approach.
Opportunities for problem solving are maximised to enable pupils to become more independent learners in all aspects of their lives.