Maths Curriculum Intent

“Go down deep enough into anything and you will find mathematics.” – Dean Schlicter  

Mathematics is a creative and highly interconnected discipline that has been developed over centuries, providing the solution to some of history’s most intriguing problems. It is essential to everyday life, critical to science, technology, and engineering, and necessary for financial literacy and most forms of employment. A 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. 

Our curriculum aims to develop fluency in the fundamentals of mathematics, through varied and frequent practice with increasingly complex problems over time, so that students develop conceptual understanding and the ability to recall and apply knowledge rapidly and accurately. As the repertoire of mathematical skills that a student possesses grows increasingly more complex, so does the ability of students to use their mathematics to model real life situations. 

Key Stage 3

All pupils in Key Stage 3 follow a tailored curriculum which covers the topics outlined in the national curriculum.

Pupils are taught the following at both Key Stage 3 and at GCSE level: number, algebra, ratio, geometry, statistics, and probability.

All pupils follow a programme of study that aims to stretch and challenge them, building upon and consolidating their prior learning. Any pupils who have gaps in their knowledge are supported to ensure that they have a sound foundation of mathematical knowledge and fluency.

As pupils’ confidence in the foundations of mathematics improves, pupils are challenged to develop their mathematical understanding, look in greater depth at the topics, and spend more time on more abstract concepts such as algebraic manipulation. This ensures that pupils are equipped to solve more complex problems and gives them the firmest possible foundation for study at GCSE.

Key Stage 4

Pupils in Years 10 and 11 study OCR specification (J560), following either the Higher or Foundation Tier course.

The GCSE course builds upon the knowledge, skills and understanding developed in Key Stage 3 and stretches the pupils to become more analytical problem-solvers linking different areas of  mathematics together.

The full specification can be found at:

Key Stage 3

All pupils will sit a formal assessment each term in the main hall covering topics taught in the previous term.
Assessment 1: 1 hour non-calculator exam
Assessment 2: 1 hour calculator exam
Assessment 3: 1 hour calculator exam

Alongside these formal exams, pupils will be assessed throughout the year by their class teacher through completion of classwork, homework, quizzes, and mini end of unit tests. This allows any gaps to be identified and relevant intervention to be put in place.

Key Stage 4

Year 10

Pupils complete an assessment in the exam hall each term. This exam is a shortened version of a GCSE paper which prepares pupils for the rigours of their final examination in year 11.

Assessment 1: 1 hour calculator paper

Assessment 2: 1 hour non-calculator paper

Assessment 3: 1 hour calculator paper

Pupils in year 10 are also assessed informally in lessons by completing past GCSE papers in class each month alongside their class teacher’s assessment of their classwork and homework.

Year 11

Pupils in Year 11 complete a GCSE exam paper or topic-based assessment in lessons each fortnight throughout the year. This ensures pupils are fully prepared for the final examination and gives their teacher valuable data to identify gaps in knowledge to enable targeted intervention.

Pupils will complete a full set of GCSE papers during the assessment periods in November and February.

Each mock exam consists of three examinations:

Paper 1: 1 hour 30 mins calculator paper

Paper 2: 1 hour 30 mins non-calculator paper

Paper 3: 1 hour 30 mins calculator paper

The OCR GCSE papers are weighted depending on the tier of entry. At foundation tier the largest sections are number and ratio, proportion, and rates of change accounting for 50% of the marks on each paper. At higher tier the largest section is Algebra.

Foundation TierHigher Tier
Ratio, proportion, and rates of change25%20%
Geometry and measures15%20%
Statistics Probability15%15%
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