The Mathematics program at EVPS is designed to continually improve the mathematical understandings and skills of all our students. We believe it is essential for our students to build a strong foundational knowledge in all areas of the Mathematics curriculum. This will help to prepare our students for continuing their study of mathematics beyond primary school. A strong foundation will also prepare our students to use mathematical concepts to assist them in their daily life as adults.
The teaching of Mathematics is organised into three content areas which can be linked during teaching sessions:
- Number and Algebra – This focuses on developing student understanding of counting, patterns, place value, the four processes, financial mathematics, fractions and decimals
- Measurement and Geometry – This focuses on developing students understanding of different types of measurement including; length, area, perimeter, time, volume and capacity. It also focuses on the properties of shapes and the relationships between shapes and measurement. Finally it includes a focus on location.
- Statistics and Probability – This focuses on building understandings about how to create, display and interpret data and developing an understanding of chance and how it can influence the outcome of events.
These content areas are taught through a structured approach that incorporates activities which focus on developing the Mathematics Proficiencies outlined in the Australian Curriculum. These strands are:
- Understanding – Where students build their knowledge of transferable mathematical concepts and make links between related concepts.
- Fluency – Where students develop skills in choosing appropriate procedures and carry out these procedures accurately and efficiently.
- Problem Solving – Where students develop their ability to make choices, interpret, formulate and investigate during problem situations. Students formulate and solve problems using Mathematics to represent meaningful situations.
- Reasoning – Where students develop an increasingly sophisticated capacity for logical thought and actions. This could include: analysing, proving, evaluating, explaining, inferring, justifying or generalising their mathematical thinking.
To ensure that each student at our school reaches their full potential in Mathematics the following classroom procedures are followed:
Prep and Year 1: Students have five sessions of Mathematics a week. During this time students are encouraged to develop their mathematical knowledge and thinking through the use of concrete materials and play. Students are continually assessed by their teachers using a variety of tools and the teaching program is tailored to meet each student’s point of need based on assessment results. Each teacher in the Prep and Year 1 unit plan their teaching programs together. This ensures consistency of curriculum delivery across every class in the unit. Students are also exposed to indirect teaching of mathematical concepts through language experience activities and their investigations into their integrated topics.
Years 2 to 6: Students have five sessions of Mathematics each week. Students are continually assessed by their teachers using a range of assessment tools. The results of these assessments ensure teachers match their teaching to support students in developing their mathematical understandings at their individual point of need. During Mathematics some students may go to different teachers for specific teaching of content areas, for example; addition, subtraction, division or multiplication. The teachers within each year level plan their activities together to ensure their activities are open ended and varied enough to cater for the spread of student abilities in the cohort. This shared planning time also promotes consistency of lesson delivery within each classroom across the school.
Assessment: The mathematical understanding of each student is continually assessed by teachers throughout the year. Teachers use a variety of assessment tools including; standardised tests, online testing, individual conferencing, one-to-one interviews, open ended activities and developmental checklists.
Homework: Students in our school from Year 1 to Year 6 are provided with access to Mathletics, which is a computer based Mathematics program. While students are set tasks to complete using the program in class time, we also encourage students to use the program at home to support their learning. The program encourages the development of automatic recall of maths facts and fluency skills.