At Sheffield Girls’ we know and understand that every student is capable of developing and being successful in Mathematics, whatever their starting point. We have high expectations of all our students, all of whom follow the same curriculum in Key Stages 3 and 4. Our experienced team of teachers are all subject specialists, and are committed to knowing all their students as individuals and ensuring that they have the opportunity to make maximum progress. Teaching schemes are designed to ensure that all students can access the whole curriculum, while higher-attaining students are still stretched and pushed to develop as mathematicians.
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Years 7 and 8 (Key Stage 3)
Mathematics in Years 7 and 8 is centred around building the key skills in number and algebra which will be the foundation of pupils’ learning in the coming years. This includes building fluency in operations with fractions, ratio and proportional reasoning, and a deep understanding of basic algebra and in particular solving equations. Pupils will also study geometry, developing their reasoning using angle facts, and the essentials of data handling. Problem solving is central to the curriculum and features across all topics. A focus on fluency and depth of understanding will prepare pupils for the challenges of the IGCSE course.
Mathematics is taught for three hours per week throughout Key Stage 3. Students are taught in form groups until Christmas of Year 7, after which they are placed in teaching groups within two ‘tiers’.
Year 7 Maths Day
In the Spring term, all Year 7 pupils participate in Mathematics Day, a House competition involving working in teams to solve a succession of mathematical puzzles and challenges. In addition, higher achieving pupils take part in the annual UK Mathematical Challenge competition.
Year 8 Maths Trip
All students visit Lightwater Valley theme park in the Summer term of Year 8, as part of the extended Maths curriculum. They undertake a number of mathematical investigations over the course of the day, relating to the various rides and experiences offered by the theme park, and use their problem-solving skills to complete a variety of fun and challenging activities.
Years 9-11 (Key Stage 4)
In Year 9, students begin formal study of the IGCSE Mathematics course. They will remain in the same teaching groups as for Key Stage 3, but these are regularly reviewed as the course progresses to ensure that all students can reach their full potential. Through a carefully constructed teaching scheme, students build up the large body of knowledge and understanding required for the IGCSE course over Years 9 to 11, with regular consolidation of previous topics to ensure they are retained in long-term memory. Regular assessments and targeted support ensure that students are making the progress needed to be successful in these important external examinations.
Students also have the option of studying for the AQA Level 2 Certificate in Further Mathematics during years 10 and 11. This is a challenging course which offers a superb foundation for continued study of Mathematics at AS or A level, and which gives the students an additional qualification.
Every Mathematics teacher at Sheffield Girls’ makes themselves available to support students outside of lessons when it is needed. There is also a structured programme of dedicated lunchtime clinics (three times per week) to which students can drop in to get help with their Mathematics. These are staffed by members of the Mathematics department and sixth form Mathematics prefects.