Our aim at Northbourne is for all children to enjoy mathematics and have a secure and deep understanding of fundamental mathematical concepts and procedures when they leave us to go to secondary school. We want children to see the mathematics that surrounds them every day and enjoy developing vital life skills in this subject.

We use the evidence based ‘Teaching for mastery’ approach which is encouraged by the NCETM (National Centre for Excellence in the Teaching of Mathematics) and the DfE.  This is further explained in our Maths Curriculum document.

The National Curriculum for maths is based on 3 key aims:

  • Pupils’ developing fluency in the fundamentals of mathematics so that they develop conceptual understanding and the ability to recall and use maths rapidly and accurately
  • Being able to use reasoning and generalisation to develop an argument or proof
  • Developing pupils’ ability to solve problems by applying maths to a range of increasingly complex problems

Being able to calculate effectively underpins all of these aims. At Northbourne, pupils are introduced to calculating through practical, oral and mental activities. As pupils become more able to record their thinking, their mental methods are strengthened, and informal written methods are introduced. These methods become increasingly efficient and refined, leading to the use of traditional compact written methods.

Teaching of each calculation method includes:

  • Effective use of a range of structured apparatus, as shown in the rest of this policy
  • Use of visual images and models
  • Parallel teaching of the inverse operation to strengthen pupils’ understanding of links between different areas of maths
  • Wider context – in the form of, for example, word problems – to ensure pupils understand when the strategy might be applied

Our calculation policy outlines progression in written methods for addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. If you have any questions about any of the strategies or methods included in this policy, please get in touch with your child’s class teacher, Miss Rawcliffe (our maths subject leader), or Mr. Shaughnessy. The aim of our policies is to ensure all members of our school community – children, parents and children – understand the progression through the stages of developing fluency with written methods. This will ensure it is taught, explained and understood in a way which is systematic and consistent.


Progression through the curriculum:

The National Curriculum for Maths outlines the intended learning for each year group, and is used by teachers at Northbourne to plan sequences of lessons.  The objectives for each year group are shown at the links below: