Curriculum Intent

“We strive to develop our students into thinking, speaking and aspiring like Mathematicians using a mastery approach”

We believe mathematics is for life, not just for GCSEs! There are so many times in real life where we need mathematics, this may be more general problem solving or logical thinking skills to a specific skill such as reading a train timetable or understanding interest rates and percentages. It is a subject that is highly interconnected within itself and other subjects such as Science, Geography, Technology, Engineering, Computer Science, Business and Psychology. We see Maths at Friesland as a 5-year exploration that is sequenced to allow students to build on their KS2 knowledge, whilst also giving them a chance to deepen their understanding of a topic or fill gaps in their knowledge.

Mastery is at the heart of what we do at Friesland. The key for our KS3 curriculum is depth not breath, where the most crucial knowledge for GCSE is taught first and well to all students. We want to engage our students and believe our mixed ability KS3 classes ensure our curriculum is ambitious for all providing equal opportunities for all students to have access to the content, through scaffolding up, whilst promoting higher aspirations in students.

We challenge students in lessons by ensuring there is appropriate demand which offers students opportunities to develop higher order thinking skills, to explore, be creative, test conjectures and to generalise.

By the end of their education, a student of Maths at Friesland School will:

  1. Be able to think like a mathematician.

Our curriculum embeds and develops mathematical thinking from the first lesson in Year 7 so that students become adept at reasoning, applying maths to problems, interleaving topics and making connections via repeated, varied practice over time. We want our students to think flexibly and be able to apply their knowledge in multiple contexts.

  1. Be able to speak like a mathematician,

Focus is on precise mathematical language which is used and highlighted throughout our curriculum, supported by our 100% Sheets in KS3. There are regular opportunities every lesson for students to discuss and articulate their thinking, either in smaller groups or to the whole class. Through carefully created tasks and the use of mini whiteboards teachers are able to probe responses and help students to answer questions in a ‘better’ mathematical way. You will often hear a Maths teacher asking a student “why?” even if they have just given a correct answer we want to know why and how they got their answer. Teachers will be on the lookout for good discussion points and misconceptions to promote mathematical talk. Students are expected to actively listen and comment.

  1. Be able to write like a mathematician,

Quality of written communication and method application are key to success in maths and is how students will be assessed in Maths at both GCSE level and A level. Our curriculum ensures consistent mathematical models are used throughout our students’ five-year journey, which are built on from Year 7 all the way up to Year 11.  GCSE exam questions often require students to spot errors and misconceptions, present an argument for which method is correct and present a full and complete proof. We will teach students how best to set out your workings in a worked “I do” model when introducing a topic and ensure they can articulate their thoughts clearly, concisely and accurately on paper as well as verbally.

  1. Be able to aspire like a mathematician,

We want students to appreciate the joy of Maths and have “lightbulb moments” where everything comes into place. Links to other subjects will be referenced where there is content overlap in the curriculum and also at higher GCSE with A level Maths content. Being a competent mathematician will not only help them achieve in maths but in other subjects and their further studies too; students will aim to be as successful as possible in maths to enhance their life choices. There will be many opportunities over the years for students to engage in aspirational events such as the UKMT Maths Challenges, TTCT Maths competitions, and the annual Elevating Maths Conferences at the University of Nottingham to name a few. Where appropriate, links to the real world and related jobs will be highlighted but the primary focus will be on the employability skills that are learned through studying maths: resilience, inner drive, enjoying the challenge, problem solving, independence, communication, self-motivation, accountability and reflection are our core drivers. If students harness these skills achievement and success will follow; everyone can be a mathematician.


Powerful knowledge

Our 5 pillars of a good Friesland Maths lesson (which link to the principles of mastery and main aims of the National Curriculum) are obvious throughout our Maths curriculum, ensuring that pupils are fluent in mathematics and proficient at reasoning and problem solving.

  • Our Mathematics curriculum is designed to progressively help students master a number of key skills through out Key Stage 3. By using a mastery approach, we have structured the curriculum to give students an in-depth understanding of mathematical skills while promoting enjoyment, engagement, challenge and real-life applications.
  • At Key Stage 3, knowledge of Key Learning Points (KLPs) will be assessed before and after the content is taught throughout the year and used to inform teaching.
  • We teach Key Stage 3 in fully mixed ability groups to provide equal opportunities and access to the same curriculum for all, whilst providing challenge for more able students through developing their higher order thinking skills in application of the content. Scaffolding is always available for students in order for them to access the curriculum.
  • 100% Sheets in Key Stage 3 provide students with the powerful knowledge they require for lessons and allows them to revisit it throughout the year.
  • In KS4 we provide opportunities for recall and retrieval of KS3 knowledge as well as focus on exam style practice and technique, whilst getting them to be more reflective and develop the resilience they will require for GCSEs and beyond.
  • The GCSE curriculum is split into two tiers is still delivered using a mastery approach and we are committed to maximising student’s learning.
  • The Key Stage 4 curriculum requires the coverage of broader and deeper mathematical content with greater emphasis on problem solving and mathematical reasoning. The course has been designed to equip students for the mathematical demands they will face in further study or employment.
  • The Key Stage 5 curriculum builds on from GCSE Maths and further explores skills introduced in Key Stage 4 and demanding greater fluency form GCSE topics. It also introduces brand new areas of mathematics like differentiation and integration as well as further developing topics already met like trigonometry. It is split into pure and applied (Statistics and Mechanics) components.
  • The A level curriculum is sequenced so some topics in Year 12 are revisited and built upon in Year 13. We will focus on revision in Year 13 how to bring together both Year 12 and Year 13 content and how this can look in exam style questions. Throughout our delivery of the A level curriculum we promote resilience and independent learning that students will need for further study or employment.

The Maths curriculum will support and scaffold all students to be successful:

  • All lessons follow an explicit modelling process of “I do, we do, you do”. This gradual release of responsibility allows students to see the metacognitive process involved in answering a maths question and helps them develop as learners. Worked examples from the “I do” stage of modelling are used as models of excellence to ensure all students know what success looks like, giving their work clarity and purpose.
  • Careful question selection throughout the curriculum means that misconceptions are highlighted and unpicked before students work independently. This supports those who may have issues with retrieval or understanding to access the new content they are learning.
  • Common key representations and manipulatives are used as a scaffold for students to support their learning on. Number lines, bar models, negative number counters are all examples of representations that run like a thread throughout our curriculum and a referenced explicitly in lessons over the years. As these methods can be used in multiple situations cognitive load is reduced and conceptual understanding is supported and reinforced.
  • Tier two and three vocabulary runs throughout the entire curriculum, which ensures students are equipped with the word power they need to succeed, at school and beyond, Students are encouraged to “say it better” and the use of 100% Sheets in Key Stage 3 supports this.
  • The use of mini white boards, “Show me”, is a key formative assessment method built in to every lesson. Used at hinge points within the lesson to check for understanding, teachers can see when a class is ready to move on to the “You do” part of the lesson. If the whole class is not ready, then teachers will be responsive in their delivery and adapt the lesson in order to secure understanding before moving on. It will also be possible to identify individuals in need of targeted support when working independently, in which case, teachers can offer further explanation and reassurance ensure all learners are confident and can move forwards together.
  • The use of a calculator is encouraged (where appropriate) to ensure that students are not slowed down by cognitive overload from mental or written methods. Instead, students can focus on the key learning point within that lesson and progress more quickly through the practice. Appropriate and effective use of a calculator will be explicitly taught which will enhance success at GCSE maths where two out of three of the exam papers allow a calculator to be used.
  • Algebra is introduced in Year 7 to students though not formally so when students are introduced to it formally in Year 8 it isn’t anything difficult or worrying as they’ve being doing it during Year 7, we just haven’t called it algebra!
  • Diagnostic and formative assessments will take place frequently throughout the curriculum to ensure that all required key learning points are covered in appropriate depth, the curriculum can be adapted for those who have already got a good understanding of that key learning point or those who need additional practice. This approach, as well as the sequencing of the curriculum, will ensure that all prerequisite knowledge is secure before new content is taught.
  • In Year 11 there will be formalised mocks twice a year designed to acclimatise students to the process of examinations and what to expect whilst also providing them with accurate grades that they are currently working at. These will be reflected on and used to fill gaps in knowledge and focus teaching in Year 11.
  • All students at Friesland have access to an online platform called Complete Maths TUTOR to work on independently to fill in any learning gaps they may have in order to support their progress and learning in school. There will be built in time during lesson time (roughly once every 4 weeks) for students to use Complete Maths TUTOR and ensure they are all confident using it and it will also be used regularly for homework to ensure gaps in knowledge are addressed and filled throughout their time at Friesland.

The Maths curriculum contributes to the personal development of students at Friesland School:

  • Our curriculum meets the national curriculum for Key Stage 3 and 4 fully. There are blocks where the GCSE specification requirements are exceeded for example, probability notation for intersection and union and function notation for those studying GCSE at higher, this is to ensure any student wishing to take up A level maths are equipped with the appropriate skills and knowledge. Our curriculum also requires students to answer question types that are beyond the scope of those included in GCSE maths such as conjecturing and generalising (proof) in both Key Stages. As a result, students are well prepared to be successful in GCSE examinations. In Year 11 students will focus on GCSE style questions such as “show that” and GCSE skills such as “listing and describing”.
  • Throughout our curriculum students will encounter situations where they need to “read” maths, this will be transferable to when they need to interpret statistics in later life, e.g. those shared in the news. Being able to comprehend the scale of some numbers (e.g. billions of pounds of national debt), averages (e.g. average house price), and charts and graphs (e.g. the number of cases during a pandemic) will help support students make sense of the information shared in the real world. This in turn will enable them to make informed decisions and judgements in later life.
  • Oracy is an important skill developed in our curriculum, being able to articulate your thought process, method and reasoning is a skill applicable in all aspects of life, allowing students to be brave and make a positive contribution to the world we share.
  • Throughout our curriculum students will learn how to make inferences, critically assess representations of data and check the sensibility of an answer, these skills will allow students to think critically and identify bias in news articles or assess the validity of “fake news” shared on social media.
  • Opportunities are built in to the curriculum to highlight links to the world of work, enhancing the careers, advice and guidance. The importance of maths as a gateway qualification and the implications of resitting a GCSE should they not be successful in achieving a grade 4 or better are discussed regularly in maths lessons, particularly in Key Stage 4.
  • During their five-year journey students may attend maths events with their peers from other schools or schools from TTCT where they will be given the opportunity to work with people they have not met before in a different environment. This will build their confidence and be good preparation for Post 16 study or the world of work where students will be expected to conduct themselves professionally and appropriately.
  • Throughout their five-year maths journey students will develop their employability skills. In every maths lesson students will use at least one of the skills of: resilience, enjoying challenge, problem solving, logical thinking, independence, communication, being self-motivated, being accountable and reflective.

Opportunities are built in to make links to the world of work to enhance the careers, advice and guidance that students are exposed to:

  • There is an explicit money unit in our Year 9 curriculum to support students’ financial skills and give a better understanding of how the world of work and pay operates. This unit includes bills, bank statements, interest, VAT and tax. As well as currency conversions and best buys.
  • All students in Key Stage 3 are given the opportunity to represent Friesland in the UKMT junior Maths challenge and win bronze, silver and gold certificates.

Key Stage 3

At Key Stage 3, students receive 10 lessons a fortnight.

Year 7 curriculum plan

Year 8 curriculum plan

Key Stage 4

At Key Stage 4, the GCSE curriculum is split into two tiers higher and foundation. Foundation tier covers grades 1-5 and the higher tier covers grades 4-9. We use OCR exam board for GCSE which consists of 3 papers, sat in the following order a calculator paper, a non-calculator paper and a calculator paper. Each paper consists of 100 marks.  In Years 9, 10 and 11 students will receive 9 lessons of Maths a fortnight which will be taught by Maths specialist teachers.

Year 9 curriculum plan

Year 10 curriculum plan

Year 11 curriculum plan

Key Stage 5

At Key Stage 5, we offer both A level Maths and A level Further Maths.  We use Edexcel exam board for A level. A level Maths is examined in 3 papers each 2 hours in duration, two of these are Pure papers and the third is a Statistics and Mechanics paper. A level Further Maths is examined in 4 papers each of 1 hour 30 minute duration, two of these are core pure papers, one is a decision paper and the third is a further mechanics paper. In Year 12 students receive 9 lessons a fortnight, rising to 10 lessons a fortnight in Year 13, this is usually split between two teachers with both sharing the pure content and taking one applied content each.