24.11.22 Sue Blakeway, Vice Chair of Governors
Hannah Darko and I visited the school on the morning of 24th November 2022. We met with Lorna Dermody to discuss the teaching and learning in mathematics. Lorna has a comprehensive understanding of the maths curriculum and the strengths and weaknesses of maths across the school. We then observed the Year 1 classes during their maths lesson, they were learning about subtraction with single figure digits.
In both classes, there was a high level of engagement from the children. They enjoy their learning and are eager to answer questions. The teachers explain concepts very clearly and the pupils have the opportunity to share their understanding with their peers and adults. The children were using whiteboards to record their work which was shared instantly with the teacher. Consequently, misconceptions were quickly picked up and addressed. It was encouraging to see that many children could recognise and correct errors.
All children use a ten square to record their number work. It was clear that they are familiar with this learning aid and the squares are used appropriately and well. There was healthy discussion about the ways to represent numbers and teachers referred to the addition inverse regularly.
We discussed the lessons with Lorna. Her observational skills are astute, and she has already formulated plans to make the teaching of maths even better. She will be sharing best practice with all teachers in Key Stage 1.
I then met individually with Lorna to discuss progress in mathematics. She has recognised that in order to improve outcomes in Year 6, it is important for the children to have relevant practise and intervention where necessary. The school has invested in a comprehensive package of assessments that can generate learning plans for individuals and groups of pupils. The children will be tested each term and any misconceptions or gaps in learning will be addressed in class and in sessions with the newly appointed learning mentor. It will be interesting to chart the impact of these interventions, it certainly looks promising initially, the tracking over time will enable the leadership team to analyse the effect on pupil progress.