Maths at Northbourne Park School

The Pre-Prep staff lay the foundations of Mathematics learning, such as number recognition, counting, number bonds and use of the main operations. The children play maths games and solve puzzles, build bridges and explore shapes.  Watch how Class 1 demonstrate it's all about the tens by clicking here.

Most classrooms now have interactive whiteboards and Abacus Evolve provides opportunities for children to use these boards to make maths more ‘active’.     

Curriculum

We recently introduced the Abacus Evolve curriculum into Years 1 to 6 which has recently become the recommended IAPS Mathematics curriculum. This combines a focus on the Mathematical building blocks whilst using investigation and interaction to cement learning.

Year 7 and 8 (Seniors)

We have also introduced a curriculum into Years 7 and 8 specifically designed to prepare students for Common Entrance and Scholarship. It has been written by the maths specialist Serena Alexander and is published by Galore Park, the publishers of all Common Entrance exams. This curriculum is more challenging than previous ones but allows children to work at a level where they are comfortable. Our scholarship students are prepared for their exams with past exam papers specific to the school they are applying to and are encouraged to undertake their own research.

The name is bond…number bond!

We have decided as a department, to return to some of the more traditional skills of the subject and allow time for children to really make their knowledge of these secure. Children must know their number bonds, be able to add, subtract, multiply and divide, not just on paper but in their heads as well. This requires practice, and practice requires time. The Mathematics syllabus is large but we are determined to allow children opportunities to practice these skills.

Times Tables

We encourage children to learn their times tables. We have introduced a series of times table certificates starting with a Bronze Standard for learning your 10 times table, up to the Diamond Standard for knowing them all. This is having a noticeable effect already on children’s maths in areas such as equivalent fractions and probability. It has also, dare I said it, injected some enjoyment into the subject.

Maths and Technology

At Northbourne Park, we are only interested in new technologies if they help children to learn and prepare them for their next school. Tablets will become an integral part of education in the very near future and so we have started by introducing them into the Pre-Prep and will extend their use into older year groups soon.

Marmite

Some say that Maths is like Marmite – you either love it or you hate it! We understand that and appreciate that whilst some children have a natural understanding of the subject, others find it more difficult. All maths teachers at Northbourne Park differentiate during their lessons to ensure that children are working at a challenging yet attainable level. Our aim is to provide lessons, preps and assessments that will make Mathematics accessible to every child at Northbourne Park and to enable them to progress fast.

Maths Club

The Northbourne Park Maths Club is open to all children, whatever their ability, and is used by pupils who need a little more help with their maths. Those taking the Kent Test in September attend Maths Club regularly during the Easter term as well as those taking Common Entrance in June. Maths Club takes place on Tuesdays and Thursday evenings from 5pm until 6pm. Pupils don’t have to come and they don’t have to come every week – the only requirement is that they sometimes bring biscuits for Mr Thompson (preferably chocolate!).

Alex Thompson

Deputy Headmaster and Director of Studies