Maths is an extremely important subject area in life both inside and outside the classroom. At GEMS Wantage Primary Academy, we teach Maths through a CPA approach (concrete, pictorial, abstract). The Concrete Pictorial Abstract (CPA) approach is a system of learning that uses physical and visual aids to build a child’s understanding of abstract topics. Pupils are introduced to a new mathematical concept through the use of concrete resources (e.g. fruit, Dienes blocks etc). When they are comfortable solving problems with physical aids, they are given problems with pictures – usually pictorial representations of the concrete objects they were using. Then they are asked to solve problems where they only have the abstract i.e. numbers or other symbols. Building these steps across a lesson can help pupils better understand the relationship between numbers and the real world, and therefore helps secure their understanding of the mathematical concept they are learning.
Children work with a different mix of whole class, group, shared or individuals on different days. They are provided with ample opportunity to share their ideas, results and recordings with each other. We aim to give our children an solid grounding before moving onto more complicated mathematical concepts, giving them the confidence to build on skills already gained.. We use Maths for Mastery model by the White Rose Maths Hub, ensuring children gain an in depth understanding of Maths by teaching fluency, reasoning and problem solving in each lesson.