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Willows High School


Maths - Marcello Lo Celso

Name:    Marcello Lo Celso      
Twitter:  @willowsmaths

Mathematics classes are set by ability and prior attainment and taught by enthusiastic maths teachers. Mathematics is essential to everyday life, critical to science, technology and engineering, and necessary for financial literacy and most forms of employment. Our high-quality mathematics education therefore provides a foundation for understanding the world, the ability to reason mathematically, an appreciation of the beauty and power of mathematics, and a sense of enjoyment and curiosity about the subject.

Key Stage 3: Years 7-9

KS3 pupils study Number, Geometry, Statistics and Algebra throughout years 7 to 9 at varying levels of depth and difficulty depending on their year group and ability. They also have dedicated time in lessons devoted to improving their numeracy skills. This prepares them well for National Testing, GCSE examinations during years 10 and 11 and of course life in the real world.

We aim to ensure that all pupils:

  • 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.

Pupils sit both a Procedural and Reasoning examination during years 7, 8 and 9 around Easter time, these tests are set by the Government. Pupils are full prepared by their classroom teachers for these tests and are given plenty of practise materials so pupils can carry out independent study outside of the classroom.

Our More Able and Talented Mathematicians are given extra opportunities to extend their subject knowledge and develop deeper thinking skills. One of the opportunities we provide is an exclusive invitation to participate in the elite United Kingdom Mathematics Trust junior and intermediate challenge papers. The examinations are designed to test and challenge pupil’s problem solving skills and certificates are awarded at Bronze, Silver and Gold, at a National level.

Pupils of all abilities are invited and encouraged to attend Maths revision sessions after school where they can get help with homework, study for upcoming tests or simply get help with something they didn’t fully understand in class.

Key Stage 4: Years 10 and 11

The programme of study for Key Stage 4 pupils is designed to extend and deepen skills introduced during Key Stage 3.

GCSE Mathematics will build on and progress from the levels of mathematics expected at the end of KS3 through the National Curriculum Programme of Study for Mathematics. Whilst GCSE Numeracy will assess the mathematics that learners will need in their everyday lives, in the world of work and in other general curriculum areas. GCSE Mathematics will extend to aspects of mathematics needed for progression to scientific, technical or further mathematical study.

This specification will encourage learners to be inspired, moved and challenged by following a broad, coherent, satisfying and worthwhile course of study. It will help learners to develop confidence in, and a positive attitude towards, mathematics and to recognise the importance and relevance of mathematics to their everyday lives and to society.

Pupils undertake the two GCSE qualifications during the summer term of year 10. Both the Numeracy and Mathematics GCSE’s constitute of two papers: Unit 1 – Non calculator and Unit 2 – Calculator allowed. Both GCSE’s are graded independently of one another. Each unit makes up 50% of the final grade.

The GCSE awarding body WJEC offers 3 tiers of examination level. Pupils will be entered for the examination tier that their teacher is confident that they can succeed in. The three tiers of entry for these qualifications are as follows:

  • Higher tier – grades A*-C
  • Intermediate tier – grades E-B
  • Foundation tier – grades D-G

Pupils have the opportunity to re sit both their Numeracy and Mathematics GCSE’s during November and June of year 11 should they need to in order to reach/exceed their expected grade.

Pupils are expected to be focused and work extremely hard in their Maths lessons in order to reach their full potential. They are also encouraged to study outside of the classroom and are provided with both physical and online resources to help them with their independent revision. 

Maths revision sessions are also held Tuesday – Friday every week after school in the lead up to the examinations. Pupils will work through topics they are struggling with and revise using past paper examinations in order to prepare. This is the perfect opportunity for pupils to receive extra help and they are encouraged to take full advantage of this opportunity.

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