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Parents Guide
to
Mathematics
Introduction
The aim of this booklet is to help you as a parent, understand how your child will progress in mathematics as he or she advances through the school. It is hoped that it will also help to give you a better understanding of the methods of calculations that your child will be taught so that you will be in a better position to help them with homework or any other problems your child might have.
Progression through the Mathematics curriculum
All our teaching is based on the updated Primary Strategy, as well as using some of the original National Numeracy Strategy. The emphasis in the strategy is on counting and pattern as the basis for all Maths as once a child is familiar with the patterns in our number system it gives them access to all levels of mathematical thinking.
Its other distinctive features are:
Its concentration on practical activities for exploring mathematical concepts and less emphasis in the early years on recording work as sums
Its emphasis on mental strategies for solving problems quickly and easily working from what is already known and familiar
Its recognition that different people work things out in different ways but get the same result
Its spiral timetable, which involves revisiting areas of Maths every half term, partly for review and then to encourage further progress.
Addition
Key Stage 2
In Year 3, children continue to develop informal written methods for addition. Towards the end of Year 3 or at the beginning of Year 4, we begin to introduce a formal method that can be used when adding larger numbers.
Method 1: 23 + 32 = 20 + 3 + 30 + 2
50 + 5 = 55
Method 2: 35 + 39 = 30 + 5 + 30 + 9
60 +14 = 74
Method 3: 352 + 139 = 300 + 50 + 2 + 100 + 30 + 9
400 + 80 +11= 491
When children are confident with this way of working, we teach them a more compact method. This is normally by the end of Year 4.
35
+39
60 (30 + 30)
14 (5 + 9)
74
Leading to:
35
+39
74
1
And finally to:
352
+ 189
541
1 1
Subtraction
In Foundation Stage and Key Stage 1, the methods of teaching children to subtract are very similar to how we teach addition. Practical play based activities are combined with informal methods of recording through pictures and simple number sentences. What is important is that children learn the range of vocabulary associated with subtraction, e.g. take away, minus, find the difference, less than..
By Year 3, children learn to subtract larger numbers by using number lines and counting up.
e.g. 63 27 =
63 27 = 36
We begin to teach more formal methods by the end of Year 3 or beginning of Year 4.
Method 1: 67  23 = 60 7
 20 3
40 4 = 44
50
Method 2: 63  27 = 60 13
 20 7
30 6 = 36
50
Method 3: 363  127 = 300 60 13
100 20 7
200 30 6 = 236
Finally, we teach children a compact method known as decomposition, when they are competent and confident with understanding the previous process. For some children, depending on their developmental readiness, this may not be until Year 6.
Method 4 63  27 =
5 1
6 3
 2 7
3 6
Method 5 363  127 =
5 1
3 6 3
 1 2 7
2 3 6
Method 6 424  178 =
3 11 1
4 2 4
 1 7 8
2 4 6
Multiplication
By the time children get to Year 3, informal methods of recording extend to multiplying two digit numbers.
e.g. 23 x 3 = 20 x 3 = 60 + 3 x 3 = 9
60 + 9 = 69
In Year 4, this method is further developed and formalised onto what is known as the grid method.
23 x 3 x 20 3
3 60 9 =69
236 x 4 x 200 30 6
4 800 120 24 = 944
In Year 5, children learn multiply to by two digit numbers.
23 x 14 = (20 x 10) + (20 x 4) + (3 x 10) + (3 x 4) =
200 + 40 + 30 + 12
282
Grid Method 238 x 43
403Total2008000600 860030120090 1290832024 344Total10234
Division
In Key Stage 2, the division of two digit numbers is taught as follows:
Method 2
27 9 =
How many times can I take 9 away from 27?
27 9 9 9 = 0
27 9 = 3
This method is called repeated subtraction.
Method 3
27 6 =
6 x 4 = 24
27  24 = 3
4 r3
Method 4
98 3
98
90 (30 x 3)
8
 6 (2 x 3)
2 = 32 r2
Following these step by step procedures leads comfortably into long division.
492 16 =
492
 160 (10 x 16)
332
 160 (10 x 16)
172
 160 (10 x 16)
12 30 r12
.
+30
+3
+3
27
30
63
60
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