Ark Conway Primary Academy
“We’ve applied the approach faithfully – and we’re ranked number one for maths at Key Stage 1”
Damian McBeath | Headteacher
As a start-up school in 2011, we joined the Mathematics Mastery partnership in 2012 and we now teach the approach from Reception to Year 4. Our school has a diverse intake – 25% are on pupil premium and 20% speak English as an additional language.
In 2011 some pupils were working in line with national levels and others were significantly below.
By 2014 and 2015, my school had the best Key Stage 1 results in the whole country. We are ranked joint number one for maths at Key Stage 1, with 100% of our pupils achieving a Level 3.
I believe my school’s success in maths is due to a combination of factors. We’ve applied the Mathematics Mastery approach faithfully and rigorously and made use of the excellent resources.
The approach particularly works for us because we already have a strong culture and belief that no child will get left behind. We also strongly believe that teachers must constantly strive to improve their teaching. It’s not one or the other, you need both.
I’m very proud of the way my staff have embraced the programme. The structure of Mathematics Mastery has given my teachers the freedom and confidence to use their own knowledge and make the lessons their own. Focusing on the process of learning maths, and not just on getting the right answer, is key.
The Mathematics Mastery partnership is just that – a partnership. My teachers spend a lot of time collaborating with each other but also with the wider Mathematics Mastery community. I really believe this network has had a huge impact on successful maths teaching.
The broader benefits of the approach are clear. The children have developed a great deal of mathematical language and are able to openly explain their answers. They are willing to take risks in their learning, and explore maths problems. They don’t see it simply as a question of getting the right or wrong answer.