'The pupils' achievement in mathematics is exceptional.' ISI Inspection, May 2014
Mathematics is essential to everyday life, critical to science and technology and necessary for financial awareness. We aim to develop conceptual understanding of the number system and fluency in using different methods of calculation. Children solve problems which require an ability to reason mathematically, develop an appreciation of the beauty and power of mathematics and gain a sense of enjoyment and curiosity about the subject.
Every opportunity is given over to practical tasks and pupils are encouraged to talk about mathematics. A strong and consistent focus on meaningful questioning helps to ensure that pupils are challenged and actively tackle difficult areas of learning. They are encouraged to find patterns and make connections between calculations.
We enjoy stimulating, fast-paced Maths lessons every day. Our spiral curriculum ensures continual revision and progression. This process allows for constant development to challenge the most able whilst also regularly revisiting earlier areas of knowledge for those who need it. Activities are accessible to everyone and ensure true mastery of concepts, fostering a sense of success in all pupils.
Primary Maths Challenge
St Bernard’s Prep has been taking part in the Primary Maths Challenge for many years. Each year the Maths Association offers the challenge which attracts schools from across the country, enabling pupils to take part in a mathematical contest which is both motivating and engaging. Each year our pupils are excited to be a part of this challenge. We are always delighted with our successes but more importantly, we relish in just being able to take part.
63,000 children entered in November 2016 with 1,932 pupils who scored 19 or more invited to take part in the Bonus Round in February 2017. In the Bonus Round 4 pupils scored full marks, 6 scored 24, 15 scored 23, 24 scored 22 and 44 scored 21. These 93 pupils received Gold awards. 302 pupils received Silver awards and 483 received Bronze awards. This year the PMC have introduced lapel badges in place of medals – we really like our badges and wear them proudly every day.
The UK Mathematics Trust (UKMT) is a registered charity whose aim is to advance the education of children and young people in mathematics. The UKMT organises national mathematics competitions and other mathematical enrichment activities for students 11-18 year old.
The Junior Challenge is aimed at the top third of pupils in Year 8 or below in England and Wales. For the last three years we have entered our most able mathematicians for this competition, even though it is aimed for pupils two years above. We are always proud of all our children’s achievements but feel a special ‘glow’ at their success in the challenging UKMT competition.
St. Bernard’s Pupils Reach Gold Standard in Junior Maths Challenge
Earlier this year, a number of our Year 6 pupils took part in the UK Junior Mathematical Challenge (JMC), which is run by the UK Mathematics Trust. It encourages mathematical reasoning, precision of thought, and fluency in using basic mathematical techniques to solve interesting problems. It is aimed at pupils in years 7 and 8 in England and Wales, S1 and S2 in Scotland and years 8 and 9 in Northern Ireland. The problems on the JMC are designed to make students think. Most are accessible, yet challenge those with more experience; they are also meant to be memorable and enjoyable.
We are extremely proud of our Year 6 pupils who can take part in a challenge which is aimed at pupils at least a year older. This makes their achievements even more significant, and truly shows the great potential of our bright young mathematicians.