English at Brisbane Park Infant School
At Brisbane Park Infant School we believe that reading is a valuable and rewarding experience. Mastering this skill will enable children to access the whole curriculum with enjoyment.
We cover reading in many different ways. We use the Power of Reading approach to explore different authors each term, this gives children the opportunity to explore texts in an enjoyable and fun way. We also do aspects of the Big Reading programme where children work with reading buddies to explore many different books, they also work with their peers to complete mini missions each week.
We use the Oxford Reading Tree reading scheme across the school.
We encourage parents, carers and grandparents to come to our weekly book club on a Wednesday afternoon where children have fun reading books with their families. Children in KS1 also do weekly comprehension activities to show how well they have understood what they have read.
Reading challenges are also set for children to complete during school holidays.
Independent writing is an important skill for children to have as they move through their education. We begin teaching independent writing skills from Reception and by the time children leave us in Year 2 all children are writing independently and enjoy doing so. Children have the opportunity to write in all subjects. We use aspects of the Big Writing scheme weekly which helps children to become confident, independent writers. Planning is adapted to meet needs of individual children.
At Brisbane Park we use systematic teaching of phonics to support the development of children’s reading and writing. Children will progress in their phonic development as they learn letters and the sounds they make to using and applying this knowledge to read and write words and later sentences. Children are given the opportunities to use and apply their phonic learning through a variety of games and activities both independently and with an adult. Our planning is based on Letters and Sounds and also Phonics Play and Jolly Phonics, planning is adapted to meet needs of individual children. Phonics lessons take place daily, lasting 20 minutes.
Maths at Brisbane Park Infant School
At Brisbane Park Infant School we realise that maths is all around us and we should teach children how to make sense of the world through developing their ability to calculate, reason and solve problems. It enables children to understand relationships and patterns in both number and space in their everyday lives. Through their growing knowledge and understanding, children learn to appreciate the contribution made by many cultures to the development and application of mathematics.
Big Maths is a teaching method that embraces the logical nature of maths, translating it into simple Steps and Progress Drives. This makes progress easy and fun for both children and teachers giving all pupils the opportunity to achieve. Other strategies approach the teaching of maths in the ‘traditional way’; giving teachers broad curriculum statements with little accurate guidance on how to get pupils there. In Big Maths there is great detail built into the system that allows all teachers to experience high subject knowledge and teacher expertise, therefore getting the chronology of the maths journey right for each child.
We follow Big Maths which looks at progression through the various calculation methods to support problem solving using the four operations (addition, subtraction, multiplication and division). Big Maths is a tool which the school has adopted in the teaching of the areas of number and calculation in Mathematics.
The whole school follows this scheme with Reception covering Little Big Maths and Year 1 and Year 2 moving onto Big Maths. This consistent practise throughout the school thereby improves the understanding and attainment of pupils, in line with the development of mental and written calculations in addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. Written methods should always follow and support understanding. The steps are not age-related but progressive. It is important that pupils’ calculation methods develop through each stage and do not move on to the next one until they are ready.
Children acquire the basic skills of Mathematics through the chronology of CLIC. When we look at Core Numeracy in more detail we see that it has a 4 stage process to it:
Counting - children learn to count and to ‘count on’.
Learn Its - children then short-cut this counting by recalling their ‘counting on’ as facts.
It’s Nothing New - children then ‘swap the thing’ to realise that the counting fact, or ‘Learn It’, can be applied to any object, amount or unit of measure.
Calculation - the previous 3 phases are combined to provide a calculation structure.
The school uses a variety of teaching and learning styles in mathematics, in the main we use ‘Little Big Maths/Big Maths’ for the teaching of number. Our principal aim is to develop children’s knowledge, skills and understanding. During our daily lessons we encourage children to ask as well as answer mathematical questions. They have the opportunity to use a wide range of resources, such as number lines, number squares, digit cards and small apparatus to support their work. ICT is used in mathematics lessons for modelling ideas and methods. Wherever possible, we encourage the children to apply their learning to everyday situations.
Learn its - On a weekly basis every child is assessed by a Learn its test which is timed according to the steps covered. This starts with Steps 1 & 2 looking at finger doubles and progressing to looking at adding 2 and 3 to numbers, double 6, 7, 8, 9 and then moving on gradually. Each child needs to obtain full marks in the time given before moving onto the next step.
CLIC – Assesses the children’s ability to apply the knowledge they have gained in daily lessons. These are 10 questions covering a variety of areas covered. The children need to answer all 10 questions correctly for 3 weeks running before moving onto the next step. These are not timed assessments.
Not all areas of the maths curriculum can be covered by CLIC so other areas like shape, space and measure are covered in separate lessons. These are also linked to ‘Outer Maths’ which again has progressive steps.