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Maths

In Mathematics, it is our intent that all students have the opportunity to benefit fully from an engaging and relevant curriculum, which helps students develop a sound understanding of maths, equipping them with calculation, reasoning and problem solving skills that can be transferred to life beyond school.

We aim for pupils to;

  • become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics, including through varied and frequent practice with increasingly complex problems over time, so that pupils develop conceptual understanding and the ability to recall and apply knowledge rapidly and accurately.
  • reason mathematically by following a line of enquiry, conjecturing relationships and generalisations, and developing an argument, justification or proof using mathematical language.
  • can solve problems by applying their mathematics to a variety of routine and non-routine problems with increasing sophistication, including breaking down problems into a series of simpler steps and persevering in seeking solutions.

At Castle Donington College, the Maths curriculum has been designed as a 5-year spiral course. Pupils are taught ‘Initial Learning’ elements of the Maths GCSE course in Years 7 and 8 and begin the GCSE course in year 9. 

Our motto in the Maths department is ‘Maths is for life, not just for school’. In lessons, a large emphasis is placed on developing pupils’ ability to answer questions in a real world context. Functional skills lessons are linked to the Scheme of Learning and can be found throughout the 5-year course. These lessons include a financial Programme of Study in Key Stage 4, which aims to develop the skills, knowledge and attitudes of young people to make informed choices about managing their money now and in the future. 

Every opportunity is made to develop students’ problem solving skills and this is an integral part of most lessons, allowing pupils to relate the maths they have learnt and to make decisions on what maths to use.

Maths is taught in ability groups, which is reviewed at regular intervals. Students receive four lessons a week at both KS3 and KS4. Students have access to a set of laptops once a fortnight. For each year the Maths Scheme of Learning has been split into units, with approximately 3 topics within each unit. The various topics within the units have been carefully sequenced to reflect how the GCSE questions cover a range of topics within individual questions.

During the GCSE course there is an overlap between some topics, which is inevitable and advantageous. Revision lessons on previous topics have been spread throughout the year.  Intervention is available for pupils who require extra support within lessons.

Within Mathematics, pupils are encouraged to think critically about their work and take ownership of their learning. After assessments pupils complete question level analysis sheets which helps to identify students’ areas of strength and areas where they need to improve. Regular feedback gives students the opportunity to fill any gaps in their understanding and to give direction and strategies on how to improve their areas of weakness.