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Wheatley CE Primary School and Acorns Nursery
Together we Thrive

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Wheatley CE Primary School and Acorns Nursery
Together we Thrive


Mathematics at Wheatley

Mathematics is an important and integral part of everyday life; it provides a way of viewing and making sense of the world. It is an important skill which runs throughout all aspects of our world and is achieved through exploration, representation, discussion, practise and application.  At Wheatley we fundamentally believe that all pupils can be confident and competent in mathematics. We aim to do this by providing pupils with rich and engaging opportunities to make connections and develop deep structural knowledge of key mathematical concepts. Pupils will leave our school as fluent mathematical thinkers who are proficient in the relevant skills to support them in their daily life.  

To secure this, at Wheatley, our approach to mathematics teaching and learning is underpinned by the following intent and principles:

Mathematics Intent and Principles

National Curriculum Programme of Study

School Curriculum Overview

Implementation: The Teaching of Mathematics

A Mastery Approach


At Wheatley, we deliver our mathematics curriculum through a mastery approach. 


What is mastery?

Mastery is providing pupils from Early Years to Year 6 with opportunities to make connections and develop deep structural knowledge of key mathematical concepts. This means that pupils will to be able to recall facts from their long term memory more easily and apply what they know to unknown concepts.  

The key features of mastery teaching include:


  • A belief that all pupils can learn mathematics
  • Concepts taught in small steps leading to big ideas
  • Development of deep mathematical knowledge
  • Accessible yet challenging learning for all pupils 
  • More time spent on each key concept


“A mathematical concept or skill that has been mastered when, through explorations, clarification, practise and application over time, a person can represent it in multiple ways, has the mathematical language to be able to communicate related ideas, and can think mathematically with that concept so that they can independently apply it to a totally new problem in unfamiliar situations.”  Dr Helen Drury 

The Big Ideas of Mastery


To find out more about each element of the mastery approach, click on the links below. 



Why is counting important?

In accordance with our mastery approach, fluency is central to our teaching of mathematics. Fluency involves the quick and efficient recall of facts and procedures.

Daily counting is an important aspect in the development of this fluency; it enables pupils to see patterns in numbers as well as building a great foundation for number sense and the basis of multiplication and division. 


Our approach to counting

At Wheatley we practise daily counting from Early Years to Year 6 as part of our mathematics teaching and learning. This is delivered in a variety of ways including:


  • Use of hundreds squares and multiplication squares
  • Use of number lines and counting sticks
  • Counting physical objects
  • Singing and rhymes
  • A range of counting games


Alongside their daily learning in the classroom, pupils also practise counting as part of their weekly home learning. 


Click on the link below to see our school's progression in counting document.


One of the key features of our mastery approach is that concepts are taught in small steps leading to big ideas. Our approach to teaching calculation supports this. Once fluent with number, pupils are taught calculation strategies one key point at a time allowing for deep and sustainable learning before progressing to the next step. Once mastered, pupils then have a solid understanding of calculation methods which they can apply to help them reason, think mathematically and solve problems.


Our policy is set out to highlight the general progression in calculation, which will allow all pupils to develop a conceptual understanding through the continued use of practical equipment and visual representations. It is our intention that addition, subtraction, multiplication and division are taught with interconnectedness, as opposed to in isolation from one another. All calculation strategies are taught explicitly using a Concrete – Pictorial – Abstract (CPA) approach in every year group. 


Wheatley Calculation Policy

Mathematics Home Learning


Home learning covers everything that children do outside of normal school hours that contributes to their learning in response to guidance from the school. Home learning encompasses a whole range of activities instigated by teachers and parents to support children’s learning.

Click below to find out more about home learning in mathematics and to access useful resources to help with learning at home.