Scroll to content
Kirkbampton CofE Primary School home page

Kirkbampton C.E. School

With Hope, Friendship and Compassion, we learn together.



At Kirkbampton CE Primary School, we want children to have the key knowledge needed to improve their mental speed, rapid recall of facts and core mathematical skills so that they can use these in wider life contexts. We intend to develop their reasoning and problem solving skills through a mastery and greater depth approach, allowing children time to practise and understand arithmetic concepts as well as encouraging pupils to explain their reasoning in depth. Following the mastery approach, we aim to present children with problems in a variety of ways, and in turn teach them the skills to be able to respond using different representations. This is to enable them to develop fluidity of skills and understanding which can be applied confidently to a range of situations. We endeavour to involve parents and carers in their child’s education so that they are confident when supporting them. We aim for aspirations to be high and children to be aware of the relevance and importance of maths in their present and future life.




Maths is a core subject, given significant time on the timetable, with a daily lesson in every class.


Our lessons focus on a Maths Mastery approach, involving all children accessing the learning at their own level, with differentiated tasks provided by teachers for the children to choose for themselves. This develops their independence as well as their understanding of their own strengths and areas to develop, choosing their activity based on their confidence level.
The mastery approach focuses around deeper understanding of concepts; therefore we spend more prolonged periods of time studying a particular mathematical area to allow for a build-up of knowledge and skills. We have a high emphasis on arithmetic and the basic fluency of number which is crucial for all elements of mathematics, practising these skills regularly using Mad Maths Minutes. This is a short, independent task which focuses on practise of mental maths skills, predominantly using the four operations but also incorporating revision of some previously taught concepts, such as rounding or money. The children will also take part in regular times table activities to develop fast recall of facts.


We also introduce the children to a range of problem solving and reasoning activities and encourage the children to give clear explanations for their answers. Children are taught a range of representations and methods to calculate and are encouraged to use these in their answers.


The children are taught using a concrete, pictorial, abstract approach. All children are encouraged to use equipment to help work out or represent their calculations, such as place value counters or Base 10, and all classes have a range of equipment available every lesson. They then begin to look at problems pictorially or draw their own representations such as part-whole models or bar models, before finally moving on to the abstract and looking at number sentences or word problems.




The impact and progress of the children in mathematics is monitored on a day to day basis by class teachers, and more formally during assessments. Children’s progress is shared with parents through half termly attainment reports and is monitored carefully by teachers to ensure continuing progress. We measure and celebrate their attainment and achievements using weekly awards which are presented during Celebration Assemblies.
The maths subject leader also ascertains the children’s attitude to mathematics through book scrutiny on a termly basis and informal interviews.


Each term, formal assessments take place where the children’s progress in a wider range of mathematical skills and knowledge can be determined. Teachers use the results of these assessments to inform future teaching.


We aim that the impact of maths teaching at Kirkbampton CE Primary School develops confident mathematicians with the relevant skills and understanding needed in their future lives.

Nursery and EYFS


Children in Early Years experience a variety of mathematical activities through play-based, adult-led and independent activities and work on:


  • Counting and using numbers to at least 10 in familiar contexts
  • Recognising numerals 1 to 9
  • Talking about and creating simple patterns
  • Beginning to understand addition as combining two groups of objects and subtraction as ‘taking away’
  • Describing the shape and size of solid and flat shapes
  • Using everyday words to describe a position
  • Using early mathematical ideas to solve practical problems.


A summary of the main teaching areas for the different key stages is outlined below.


Key Stage 1: Years 1 & 2


The principal focus of mathematics teaching in key stage 1 is to ensure that pupils develop confidence and mental fluency with whole numbers, counting and place value. This should involve working with numerals, words and the four operations, including with practical resources [for example, concrete objects and measuring tools].


At this stage, pupils should develop their ability to recognise, describe, draw, compare and sort different shapes and use the related vocabulary. Teaching should also involve using a range of measures to describe and compare different quantities such as length, mass, capacity/volume, time and money.


By the end of year 2, pupils should know the number bonds to 20 and be precise in using and understanding place value. An emphasis on practice at this early stage will aid fluency.


Pupils should read and spell mathematical vocabulary, at a level consistent with their increasing word reading and spelling knowledge at key stage 1.


Lower Key Stage 2: Years 3 & 4


The principal focus of mathematics teaching in lower key stage 2 is to ensure that pupils become increasingly fluent with whole numbers and the four operations, including number facts and the concept of place value. This should ensure that pupils develop efficient written and mental methods and perform calculations accurately with increasingly large whole numbers.


At this stage, pupils should develop their ability to solve a range of problems, including with simple fractions and decimal place value. Teaching should also ensure that pupils draw with increasing accuracy and develop mathematical reasoning so they can analyse shapes and their properties, and confidently describe the relationships between them. It should ensure that they can use measuring instruments with accuracy and make connections between measure and number.


By the end of year 4, pupils should have memorised their multiplication tables up to and including the 12 multiplication table and show precision and fluency in their work.


Pupils should read and spell mathematical vocabulary correctly and confidently, using their growing word reading knowledge and their knowledge of spelling.


Upper Key Stage 2: Years 5 & 6


The principal focus of mathematics teaching in upper key stage 2 is to ensure that pupils extend their understanding of the number system and place value to include larger integers. This should develop the connections that pupils make between multiplication and division with fractions, decimals, percentages and ratio.


At this stage, pupils should develop their ability to solve a wider range of problems, including increasingly complex properties of numbers and arithmetic, and problems demanding efficient written and mental methods of calculation. With this foundation in arithmetic, pupils are introduced to the language of algebra as a means for solving a variety of problems. Teaching in geometry and measures should consolidate and extend knowledge developed in number. Teaching should also ensure that pupils classify shapes with increasingly complex geometric properties and that they learn the vocabulary they need to describe them.


By the end of year 6, pupils should be fluent in written methods for all four operations, including long multiplication and division, and in working with fractions, decimals and percentages.


Pupils should read, spell and pronounce mathematical vocabulary correctly.




Children are assessed regularly throughout the school year with assessments each half term and formal assessments in the Summer term.


Additional Support


Additional support is given for children who have been identified by class teachers; in conjunction with the SENCO and headteacher. This may be in the form of individual or small group support and is reviewed regularly.

Key Instant Recall Facts (KIRFs)


Key Instant Recall Facts (KIRFs) are designed to support the development of the mental skills and key knowledge that underpin much of the maths work in schools.

An important part of maths development has always been learning of certain maths facts. For many years this has included practising times tables and addition facts, such as numberbonds and doubles. Each half term children focus on one area of Key Instant Recall Facts (KIRFs) that will be taught in school but also need to be practised at home as well.

It is important that they know these facts thoroughly and can recall them instantly. Whilst children have a wide range of abilities in mathematics, the KIRFs are designed to be a set of facts that need to be learnt thoroughly as they build on each other year on year. Again, we stress that the children must aim to know their KIRFs inside out, back to front and with instant recall.

Please engage with your children in the learning of their KIRFs and make it as fun and practical as you can. There are a number of activities for each KIRF and advice on the key language and questions that can be asked.

Children should aim to undertake these regularly at home, short and often is the best approach. You might find that your child may need to work on some of the KIRFs from the previous year as they may not be secure in those yet.

We know that, by learning these key facts which have been carefully structured to build upon each other term by term, year by year, children will leave school with a much stronger foundation of mathematical understanding to build upon and this will have huge benefits for all of the other topics that they will study in school in maths.

We hope that you enjoy working alongside your children with this mathematics work. Should you have any questions about the KIRFs, please do not hesitate to contact the school.