Maths Curriculum Intent

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

Why is the study of Maths important?

Mathematics is an essential discipline in today’s world. It is a powerful tool for understanding the world around us and our perspective of the important issues facing us as individuals, families, businesses, and nations. Maths surrounds us; we see and use maths skills and capabilities every day – from paying our household bills to advertising agencies to doctors; from retailers to builders, lawyers and accountants. Everyone needs some level of specific Mathematics knowledge. Most professions use Maths to perform their job better and to get ahead in the world.

Looking at the connections between topics in Maths is crucial for all students to understand that there are no stand-alone topics. All Maths is linked as part of a bigger picture with greater connections. The study of Mathematics encourages students to think deeply and help them to problem solve more effectively – a great life skill that all universities and employers will appreciate.

Upon entry to Sirius Academy West, students will focus on mastering key skills that will build on what they have learnt at Primary school, whilst giving the tools to progress into Key Stage 4. For our students, the understanding aspect and mastering of key skills is critical for them to deepen their knowledge and be able to apply to any situation. Too often, students know the process to complete a task without understanding either the concept or proof behind it. This can be a shallow form of knowledge and we aim to broaden their confidence and ability to tackle all types of problem solving style questions through the application of concepts.

As our students become more confident with their understanding in Maths, they start to enjoy the subject more and this encourages them to aspire to do Maths at a higher level. This will help develop mathematicians of the future as well as give our students better economic opportunities for later life. Students are also more likely to research and carry out extended learning because of their enjoyment in the subject as they seek to quench their love of Maths.

The aim for every Maths lesson taught in the Academy is to be thought-provoking, engaging and full of questions and discussions. Our students will be encouraged to use physical resources to support their learning and allow them to visually learn. We are encouraging our teachers to avoid ‘quick wins’ and provide the opportunities to understand the theories, which will be much more powerful for students long term understanding and retention.

Supporting quality qualifications within Mathematics helps raise aspirations and gives students more options in the future, breaking down social barriers and enabling them to become Global Citizens.

What skills will the study of Mathematics teach you?

Maths will help support you in your life beyond your school years and a good knowledge of Maths is critical. You will be aided by being able to use key skills in everyday calculations, understanding number patterns and developing problem solving skills.

  • You will be able to understand links between different topic areas within Maths and look at comparing information in different tables and where appropriate, be able to analyse data. Drawing conclusions from data will also be a very useful skill to possess.
  • Be able to link skills together and understand multi-step problems.
  • To be efficient in your working and problem solving methods – look for the best way to work towards an answer.
  • Be able to look at options to find more than one solution to problems.

How does the study of Mathematics support your study in other subjects?

Maths has many links with other subjects and the curriculums are carefully sequenced to ensure teaching of key components supports the wider curriculum.

  • Clear links with Science include re-arranging equations (these are taught in Maths in Y8 ready to teach in Science in Y9), surface area & volume ratios (sequenced in Maths in Y7 and Y8 ready for Science in Y9).
  • In Geography key skills required involve using and interpreting pie charts, averages, scatter-graphs and bar charts.
  • Maths is very much evident in Computer Science (use of algorithmic methods).
  • There are also more generic skills across all subject areas including percentages, probability and conversions between units.
  • Being able to transfer Maths skills across subjects is good evidence that you are mastering skills and knowledge, deepening subject knowledge and helpful towards problem solving questions within Maths.
  • References to links across subjects from teaching staff will highlight the importance of various topic areas and emphasise how critical your Maths knowledge is to help you succeed.

How Are You Assessed in Mathematics?

At Sirius Academy West, Maths is made up of key assessment areas, particularly as students approach the examinations in Year 11 and Year 13. Within each year group, students will be assessed against the topic objectives to identify their level of understanding and to highlight areas of development. Students are given detailed information linked to their performance in assessments – question level analysis (QLA). These are then used to inform what intervention is required to help students improve.

In Key Stage 3 outcomes will be linked to age related expectations and for Key Stage 4 & 5 reporting will be against exam grades and expected final outcomes.

The assessment areas for the external examinations are broken up into 3 strands:

AO1: Use and apply standard techniques

Students should be able to:

  • accurately recall facts, terminology and definitions
  • use and interpret notation correctly
  • accurately carry out routine procedures or set tasks requiring multi-step solutions

AO2: Reason, interpret and communicate mathematically

Students should be able to:

  • make deductions, inferences and draw conclusions from mathematical information
  • construct chains of reasoning to achieve a given result
  • interpret and communicate information accurately
  • present arguments and proofs
  • assess the validity of an argument and critically evaluate a given way of presenting information

AO3: Solve problems within mathematics and in other contexts

Students should be able to:

  • translate problems in mathematical or non-mathematical contexts into a process or a series of mathematical processes
  • make and use connections between different parts of mathematics
  • interpret results in the context of the given problem
  • evaluate methods used and results obtained
  • evaluate solutions to identify how they may have been affected by assumptions made

GCSE specifications in mathematics should enable students to:

  • develop fluent knowledge, skills and understanding of mathematical methods and concepts
  • acquire, select and apply mathematical techniques to solve problems
  • reason mathematically, make deductions and inferences and draw conclusions
  • comprehend, interpret and communicate mathematical information in a variety of forms appropriate to the information and context.

How can Mathematics support your future?

  • Mathematics is an expected subject to be studied at GCSE and learnt by all students. Further Mathematics is offered for students wishing to deepen their Maths knowledge and skills further.
  • Some students will want to progress further, studying A-Level Mathematics and A-Level Further Mathematics. These subject areas will really develop the love of Maths for those students with a natural flair for the subject and look to potential careers with a core Maths element to it.
  • Opportunities at universities will be open to students with the relevant qualifications and we encourage students to look at these avenues to further their education experience. A high level of Mathematics will be required to generate more options for students. This will demonstrate a high level of analytical thinking and support degree education.
  • A higher level GCSE in Maths gives students more opportunities for future careers for those not wanting to take the educational route. Employers will understand the skills and knowledge required to achieve the higher grades. It will put you in a very strong position when looking for jobs or placement.
  • There are a number of careers that the study of Mathematics would support. These include:
  • Accountant
  • Data analyst
  • Data scientist
  • Investment analyst
  • Research scientist (Maths)
  • Secondary school teacher
  • Software engineer
  • Statistician
  • Financial manager
  • Financial trader
  • Meteorologist
  • Software tester

Throughout history, Mathematics has continually developed to improve the world we live in. Famous mathematicians include, Albert Einstein, Sir Isaac Newton, Pythagoras, Alan Turing and Ada Lovelace.

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KS3 SOW Overview


Year 7

Year 8

Year 9

Autumn 1

Number systems and the axioms
• Place value systems including base 10 and other bases
 • Commutativity, associativity and distributivity
Factors and multiples and order of operations
• Factors, primes and multiples
• Square and cube numbers
• Representing the structure of number
• Establishing the order of operations

Forming and solving equations
• Review Year 7 algebra
  Forming algebraic equations
• Solving equations with unknowns on both sides
• Introduce solving equations involving algebraic fractions
Forming and solving inequalities
• Language and symbols
• Using a number line
• Forming algebraic inequalities
• Solving algebraic inequalities with the unknown on both sides
• Use graphical representations

• FDP review
• Theoretical and experimental probability
• Probability of single events
• Probability of combined events
Sample spaces
• Venn diagrams
• Sample spaces
• Two way tables
• Tree diagrams

Autumn 2

Positive and negative numbers
• Negative numbers in context
• Using negative numbers with all four operations
Expressions, equations and sequences
• Finding missing terms in sequences
• Finding the nth term
• Writing expressions
• Recognising equivalent expressions
• Forming equations

Linear graphs
• Plot coordinates to generate straight lines
• Identify key features of a linear graph
• Make links between algebraic and linear representations.
• Identify parallel lines from algebraic equation
Accuracy and estimation
• Rounding to a given number of decimal places and significant figures
• Upper and lower bounds
• Estimation

Quadratic expressions and equations
• Creating quadratic expressions
• Expanding and factorising binomials
• Plotting quadratic graphs
• Solving quadratic equations
• Completing the square and turning points

Spring 1

• Measuring and drawing angles • Angles on a straight line and around a point
• Angles in parallel lines
• Creating expressions from angle facts
Classifying 2-D shapes
• Classifying polygons according to their properties
• Rotational and line symmetry
• Area of triangles and quadrilaterals
• Formulae and solving equations
Constructing triangles and quadrilaterals
• Using a ruler, protractor and compasses to construct 2D shapes
• Using properties of quadrilaterals and triangles to explore standard constructions.

Ratio, real life graphs and rate
• Review Year 7 ratio
• Scales and reading maps
• Read and interpret real life graphs
• Rates of change including SDT
Direct and inverse proportion
• Similarity as an example of direct proportion
• Represent proportional relationships algebraically, in a table and on graphs

Constructions, congruence and loci
• Ruler and compass constructions
• Congruence
• Loci
Pythagoras’ Theorem
• Using Pythagoras to find missing sides in right angle triangles
• Using Pythagoras to solve problems with 3D objects

Spring 2

• Plotting points in all four quadrants
• Horizontal and vertical lines
• Midpoints of line segments
• Problem solving on a coordinate grid
Area of 2-D shapes
• Area of triangles and quadrilaterals
• Formulae and solving equations
Transforming 2-D figures
• Translation, rotation and reflection of an objects on a cartesian plane
• Enlargement by a positive scale factor

Univariate data
• Construct and interpret charts and graphs
• Mean, mode, median and range • Examine outliers
Bivariate data
• Scatter graphs
• Correlation
• Constructing a line of best fit
• Interpolation and extrapolation

Enlargement and similarity
• Review Year 7 and 8 ratio
• Similarity and enlargement
• Area and volume of similar shapes
Surds and trigonometry
• Surds
• Using trigonometric ratios to find unknown angles and sides
• Solving problems using trigonometric ratios

Summer 1

Primes, factors and multiples
• Prime factor decomposition
• LCM and HCF
• Square roots and cube roots
• Equivalent fractions
• Converting between fractions and decimals
• Recurring decimals
• Multiply and divide fractions
• Fractions of amounts
• Mixed numbers and improper fractions
• Addition and subtraction of fractions

Parallel lines
• Review Year 7
Angles in polygons
• Define the sum of interior and exterior angles of polygons
• Solve problems involving angles in polygons
• Understand the conventions of bearings
• Calculate and measure

Solving graphically
• Setting up simultaneous equations
• Finding solutions graphically to a set of one or more simultaneous equations
Solving algebraically
• Setting up simultaneous equations
• Using algebraic methods to solve simultaneous equations

Summer 2

• Ratio notation
• Understand the relationship between ratio and fractions
• Working with ratios and quantities
• Equivalence to fractions and decimal fractions
• Percentage of an amount
• Percentage increase and decrease
• Finding the original amount
• Using percentages, fractions and decimals in different contexts including probability

Circles and composite shapes • Explore relationship between circumference and diameter
• Calculate area and circumference
• Area and perimeter of composite shapes
Volume of prisms
• Use the formulae to calculate the volume of cubes, prisms and composite solids.
• Changing between units of volume
Surface area of prisms
• Recognising and drawing nets of prisms.
• Use the formulae to calculate the surface area of cubes, prisms and composite solids

Indices and standard form
• Index notation and rules
• Fractional and negative indices
• Comparing and ordering numbers in standard form
• Calculating in standard form Growth and decay
• Compound percentage change
• Reverse percentage change
• Other growth and decay contexts

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KS4 Overview


Year 10

Year 11

Autumn 1

Circle theorems
• Review of angles
• Deriving circle theorems
• Using circle theorems to find missing angles Probability
• Expectation
• Combinations • Conditional probability
• Independent events

Indices and standard form
• Review indices and surds
• Problem solving with indices and surds
• Calculating with standard form
Constructions and proof
• Review constructions from KS3
• Constructions and loci for GCSE
• Algebraic and geometric proof
Exam tracking point

Autumn 2

Developing algebraic thinking
• Manipulating expressions
• Understand the difference between expressions, identities, equations
• More quadratic equations
• Linear and non-linear inequalities


Statistical charts and techniques
• Box plots
• Cumulative frequency graphs
• Histograms
Transformations and algebraic methods
• Function transformations
• Finding solutions to an equation by an iterative method
• Finding the area under a curve
• Equations of circles
• Drawing and sketching graphs of circles
• Estimating the gradient using a tangent
Mock Exam tracking point

Spring 1

Direct and inverse proportion
• Review of KS3 ratio
• Expressing variables in direct and indirect proportion
• Graphs of variables in direct and indirect proportion
Pythagoras and trigonometry
• Trigonometry review
• Using Pythagoras’ theorem on 2D and 3D objects
• Trigonometric graphs
• Using trigonometric ratios in 3D


Based on information from RAG sheets of Mock examinations

Spring 2

• Column vector notation
• Vector arithmetic
• Resultant vectors
• Parallel and co-linear vectors
• Vector proof
FDP review
• Fractions, decimals and percentages review for GCSE
• Compound measures e.g. pressure, density

Exam Tracking point

Summer 1

• Linear functions review
• Parallel and perpendicular lines

  • Linear and Non Linear Simultaneous Equations

• Function notation
• Inverse and composite functions
•Transformations of functions
Other graphs
• Cubic graphs
• Reciprocal graphs
• Exponential Graphs

Exam period

Summer 2

Area and volume of 2-D and 3-D shapes
• Nets of 3D shapes
• Surface area
• Volume of a prism
• Volume of pyramids, cones and spheres
• Finding the mean, median and mode for grouped data


View Maths Sequencing

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