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Maths

Maths

Head of Mathematics: Mrs Rowe

Our vision

Mathematics is the means of looking at the patterns that make up our world and the intricate and beautiful ways in which they are constructed and realised. Numeracy is the means of making that knowledge useful. Mathematics contributes to the school curriculum by developing students’ abilities to:

• Calculate

• Reason logically, algebraically and geometrically

• Think creatively to solve problems

• Handle data

• Make decisions

• Form links between other subjects such as Science, Geography, Technology and Music

Mathematical thinking is important for all members of a modern society as a habit of mind for its use in the workplace, business and finance; and for personal decision-making. The subject transcends cultural boundaries and its importance is universally recognised. Mathematics helps us to understand and change the world.

 

Results

Year                         2011   2012   2013   2014

A*-C Mathematics    84%    74%   88%    79%

National figure          64%    68%   70%    unavailable

 

Meeting the needs of individual pupils

Pupils are banded into half year groups and then set within their band. However, we defer setting Year 7 pupils until after autumn half term, to enable a smooth transition from KS2 to KS3.

Pupils work at similar pace and staff provide enrichment activities to deepen understanding and extension materials accelerate progression, where appropriate.

Learning objectives and home learning are heavily differentiated according to target grades for each class, and finer differentiation is used in class to ensure a balance between consolidation and challenge for each pupil.

Teaching assistants are deployed according to individual needs.

Small group intervention sessions are used to support pupils who are struggling to make expected progress; these are run by specialist mathematics teachers, and sessions are personalised and tailored to meet the exact needs of the individuals in the group.

In Year 9 we begin KS4 in January, and insert an additional set in September of Year 9 to reduce class sizes and ready pupils for the start of their GCSE course.

In KS4 pupil study 17 units of work, learning objectives are given at the start of each unit, so pupils can see the learning journey for the topic. Pupils sit a pre-learning assessment to gage the depth of their prior understanding of the topics to be studied so teachers can personalise learning by beginning each child’s learning journey for that topic at the correct point. Post-learning assessments track pupil progress on each learning objective and these results are fed back to pupils so they can reflect on their achievements, and find areas to further develop.

We encourage all our pupils to take ownership of their learning and support them to do so. We subscribe to an e-Revision resource, MathsWatch, which we utilise all the way through KS4. It is a collection of hundreds of ‘how to…’ videos explaining each topic that is examined in the GCSE mathematics course. Each set of learning objectives provided at the start of a topic has its MathsWatch clip number stated so if a pupil is absent, struggling with a learning objective or revising they can log on and watch the video, try some questions and even print a worksheet for further practice.

Pupils are provided with a free, high-quality Workbook in KS4; it is supported by the e-Revision site, and is used as a flexible revision resource throughout the GCSE course.

Study support is available to all Year 11 pupils each Tuesday 3.30-4.30pm, for general revision and support. Exam Master Classes are run each Monday 3.30-4.30pm with the Head of Mathematics (a former expert examiner) and focus on how to gain top marks in the GCSE exam (aimed at Grade A/A* pupils).

 

Assessments

With reforms to exam effective 2017 our current Year 11s, Year 10s and Year 9s are all on different Schemes of Work and Assessment structures, detailed below.

 

Key Stage 3

• Mini-assessments at the end of every topic. Levels reported after every 4 mini-assessments

• End of year assessments: Calculator (1 hour), Non-calculator (1 hour) and mental arithmetic test (20 mins)

• End of Key Stage 3 Examination: Calculator (1 hour), Non-calculator (1 hour) and mental arithmetic test (20 mins)

 

Key Stage 4 (for current Year 9 pupils)

• Pre-learning & post-learning assessments for each unit of study.

• End of Year 9 Assessment (summer term): GCSE Examination papers (3 x 1.5hr exams)

• Year 10 Mock Examination (spring term): GCSE Examination papers (3 x 1.5hr exams)

• End of Year 10 Assessment (summer term): GCSE Examination papers (3 x 1.5hr exams)

• Year 11 Mock Examination (autumn term): GCSE Examination papers (3 x 1.5hr exams)

 

Key Stage 4 (for current Year 10 pupils)

• Pre-learning & post-learning assessments for each unit of study.

• Year 10 Mock Examination (spring term): GCSE Examination papers (2 x 1hr 45min exams)

• End of Year 10 Assessment (summer term): GCSE Examination papers (2 x 1hr 45min exams)

• Year 11 Mock Examination (autumn term): GCSE Examination papers (2 x 1hr 45min exams)

 

Key Stage 4 (for current Year 11 pupils)

• Multi-topic assessments at the end of every 5 units of study.

• Year 11 Mock Examination (autumn term): GCSE Examination papers (2 x 1hr 45min exams)

Updated December 2015

© St Gabriel's Roman Catholic High School 2017