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Mathematics Department Intent

“Mathematics is not about numbers, equations, computations, or algorithms: it is about understanding” – William Paul Thurston

At Lathom, it is our aim that students not only have fluency across topics, but that they can also solve problems through reasoning. This will benefit students in their examination outcomes and in their future ‘life after Lathom’.  In addition, our objectives in the Mathematics department, are to ensure at both key stages, all students master:

  • Mathematical knowledge and understanding
  • Problem solving skills to apply in academic and universal life
  • Investigative skills through discovery opportunities

The Mathematics Curriculum

The only way to learn Mathematics is to do Mathematics” – Paul Holmes

Curricula at both key stages will develop Mathematics ability and understanding. Students will be given opportunities to reason, problem solve and discover real life applications. Students will also work with technology and expand their cultural capital. The Mathematics curriculum is developed at Key Stage 3 so that students can enter Key Stage 4 with the levels of proficiency required to enable them to reach their targets and beyond. 

In all aspects of teaching, across both key stages, learning will be embedded by all teachers using consistent pedagogy, feedback and assessments. All students are given appropriate activities and have opportunities to make their work better and learning will be embedded consistently by all teachers using the following pedagogy:

  • Use activities appropriate for the teaching group
  • Provide clear instructions for students
  • Build in opportunities for students to respond
  • Provide meaningful feedback
  • Periodically check that students have progressed by using appropriate assessment strategies

Key Stage 3

Students in years 7, 8 and 9 will receive eight 60 minute lessons over a fortnight, with homework set weekly, as is the policy at Lathom. Students are taught in set groups and their progress is tracked and monitored in accordance with agreed school and department procedures. Students complete a baseline assessment once they have settled into Year 7 and, in Year 9, they also complete a unit on financial education to prepare them for ‘life after Lathom’. 

Key Stage 4

All students study GCSE Mathematics and the department follows the Edexcel syllabus. In Year 10, students have the opportunity to complete a statistical investigation and learn more about real-life application of data. Students complete three examinations at the end of Year 11, one non-calculator paper and two calculator papers.

Enrichment Opportunities

  • Maths Enrichment Club
  • Maths Homework Club
  • STEM Club
  • UKMT Challenge
  • Opportunities to develop Mathematics outside of the classroom

How to Support your Child’s Learning

Homework is set weekly using MathsWatch, where you can support your child by helping them practise their maths skills at home and watch the instructional videos for extra support where this is required. 

Where to go

  • Bletchley Park
  • Bank of England Museum
  • Woolsthorpe Manor
  • The Winton Gallery Science Museum
  • Kidzania
  • Lego Robotics – Legoland
  • Racecourses

What to watch

  • The Imitation Game – In 1939, newly created British intelligence agency MI6 recruits Cambridge mathematics alumnus Alan Turing (Benedict Cumberbatch) to crack Nazi codes, including Enigma — which cryptanalysts had thought unbreakable. Turing’s team, including Joan Clarke (Keira Knightley), analyse Enigma messages while he builds a machine to decipher them.
  • Hidden Figures – Three brilliant African-American women at NASA — Katherine Johnson, Dorothy Vaughan and Mary Jackson — serve as the brains behind one of the greatest operations in history: the launch of astronaut John Glenn into orbit, a stunning achievement that restored the nation’s confidence, turned around the Space Race and galvanized the world.
  • The Story of Maths – The Story of Maths is a four-part British television series outlining aspects of the history of mathematics. Viewers are escorted through the subject’s history and geography and examine the development of key mathematical ideas.
  • Hard Problems: The Road to the World’s Toughest Maths Contest – Representing the United States, six gifted high-school students travel to Slovenia to the world’s toughest maths competition.
  • Dream Big: Engineering our World – Filmmaker Greg MacGillivray explores the human ingenuity behind engineering marvels — big and small — and reveals the heart that drives engineers to create better lives for people around the world.

What to read

  • The Boy Who Loved Math: The Improbable Life of Paul Erdos – Deborah Heiligman
  • Blockhead: The Life of Fibonacci – Joseph D’Agnese
  • Infinity and Me – Kate Hosford
  • On a Beam of Light: A Story of Albert Einstein – Jennifer Berne
  • 50 Mathematical Ideas You Really Need to Know – Tony Crilly
  • The Math Book – Clifford A Pickover
  • Alex’s Adventures in Numberland – Alex Bellos
  • The Monty Hall Problem: Beyond Closed Doors – Rob Deaves
  • The Language of Mathematics – Frank Land
  • The Music of the Primes – Marcus du Sautoy


Future Careers

Construction Worker
Market Research Analyst
Civil Engineer
Industrial Designer
Interior Designer
Urban and Regional Planner
Operations Research Analyst
Financial Analyst
Insurance Advisor
Data Engineer
Data Scientist

Business Manager
Financial Planner
Investment Banker
Computer Programmer
Quantitative Surveyor
CAD Drafter
Mechanical Engineer
Web Developer

Curriculum Overview –  KS3 and KS4 Maths

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