Welcome to The Maths Department

Key Stage 3

When Year 7 join the school in September they are put into different sets based on their ability in Mathematics. This arrangement continues through Key stage 3 with regular assessment opportunities to allow for tracking of progress and ensuring students are working at the correct level for them to be challenged but still make progress. The subject content will meet the requirements of the National Curriculum and is based on the Key Stage 3 National Strategy Framework for teaching Mathematics.

Our key aims at Key Stage 3 are as follows:

  • Use and apply mathematics in practical tasks, in real-life problems and within mathematics itself
  • Work on problems that pose a challenge
  • Students succeed in their Mathematics and also develop a deeper understanding of the key concepts ready for Key Stage 4
  • To enable pupils to use their mathematical knowledge across the whole curriculum with confidence.

 Mathematics Lessons

Mathematics lessons at Key Stage 3 will follow the whole school structure, with regular opportunities to review and reflect on the learning. The lessons will be varied to accommodate a range of learning styles, with practical work, group work and some ICT lessons being used. Homework is set almost every lesson as doing ‘a little and often’ is the best way to support the learning of mathematics. It enables the teacher to assess understanding before moving on.   At the end of every unit of work students will have a test which is differentiated.

The Course

There are four main areas of Mathematics addressed:

  • Number and Algebra – this focuses on general calculations and introduces abstract reasoning and problem-solving
  • Shape, Space and Measures – this helps develop spatial awareness and also introduces various concepts of proof
  • Data Handling – in a world ruled more and more by data, this helps develop the representation and analysis of data whilst testing hypotheses.
  • Functional Mathematics – this focuses on applying all of the above areas but in real life context including problem solving


All students will be expected to bring to every Mathematics lesson, a ruler, protractor, a pair of compasses and a calculator. I would recommend buying a scientific calculator as this will allow your child to get to know how it works through Key Stage 3 and should last them beyond their GCSEs. So it is a worth- while investment.

Key Stage 4

Examination Board and Qualification: Edexcel GCSE (9-1) (1MA1)

What is Mathematics?

Mathematics concerns the study of number, patterns and relationships, shape & space, statistics and probability which are combined with problem solving and reasoning. Mathematics developed originally through practical requirements which still are central to its use. All students will follow a programme of study based upon the National Curriculum.

Course Structure

GCSE Mathematics has changed to assess the new Key Stage 4 programme of study which schools and colleges are required to teach. The new secondary mathematics program of study has expanded with more higher level content than has been seen previously. There is also more focus on Geometry and Ratio, for example Trigonometry is now covered in both tiers. There will still be some emphasis in examinations on the assessment of applying mathematics and using mathematics to solve problems, and some questions will be set in contexts that students should be expected to deal with in the real world.

All pupils will follow the linear specification at either Foundation tier (grades 1 to 5) or Higher tier (grades 5 to 9)– this means that all of the examinations are taken at the end of the course.  Within each tier, they will explore topics in Algebra, Number, Ratio, Geometry, Statistics and Probability.

Assessment for the course is by 3 terminal papers taken at the end of Year 11, which are equally weighted.

Linear Mathematics

  • Paper 1 (non-calculator)
  • Paper 2 (calculator)
  • Paper 3 (calculator)

 Why Study Mathematics

This is a core subject which students have to study. Mathematics is used throughout the world as an essential tool in many fields, including science, engineering, medicine, and the social sciences and is a basic entry requirement for many courses and forms of employment.  Mathematics should encourage learners to be inspired, moved and changed by following a broad, coherent, satisfying and worthwhile course of study.  The most able students will be in a position to access A-level Mathematics at Key Stage 5 and some students might consider the Further Mathematics A-level which is considered helpful for Oxbridge Mathematics and Science courses.


Free Standing Mathematics Qualification (FSMQ)

We thrive on challenging all our students and to make sure we support our most gifted mathematicians we offer the FSMQ qualification whilst they study for their GCSE.

This course provides candidates with an introduction to the mathematics studied in AS and A Level GCE modules. It is designed for those students who have a thorough knowledge of the content of the Higher Tier of the National Curriculum for Mathematics. They should have achieved, or be expected to achieve, grade A*, A or B at GCSE.

Exam board for FSMQ: OCR Additional Mathematics (6993)

Other Important Details

In Year 11 students are invited to purchase study guides to assist their revision. We support the revision process by offering lunchtime and after school revision sessions.

Extra Activities and Challenges

Throughout the school life for our students they have a variety of opportunities to get involved with. Here is a list of what we do and in each year:

Year 7

  • Sponsored timetables to raise money for the NSPCC
  • UKMT maths challenge: Junior

Year 8

  • UKMT maths challenge : Junior
  • Visit to Wincanton racecourse
  • UKMT team challenge at Millfield School

Year 9

  • UKMT maths challenge: Intermediate
  • UKMT team challenge at Millfield School
  • Engineering trip to Fleet Air Museum
  • Visits from Exeter Mathematics University

Year 10

  • UKMT maths challenge: Intermediate
  • Visits from Exeter Mathematics University

We are actively engaged with our feeder primary schools and have helped create a common approach to numeracy, problem solving and numeracy across the curriculum. The policies that have been created can be seen on the schools website.