Teacher Standards

Mastery in Mathematics TS1b TS2d TS3b TS4d

TS1b- set goals that stretch and challenge pupils of all backgrounds, abilities and dispositions

TS2d- demonstrate knowledge and understanding of how pupils learn and how this impacts on teaching

TS3b – demonstrate a critical understanding of developments in the subject and curriculum areas, and promote the value of scholarship 

TS4d- reflect systematically on the effectiveness of lessons and approaches to teaching 



A mathematical concept or skill has been “mastered” when a person:

  • can represent it in multiple ways
  • has the mathematical language to communicate related ideas
  • can independently apply the concept to new problems in unfamiliar situations


Frayer models: ask children to demonstrate maths concepts in  a variety of ways



Mastery working walls/problem solving activities


Demonstrating mastery across the classroom

  1. Numicon representing the numbers on the clock- numbers in day to day life
  2. Class display of the vocabulary for each calculation- reinforcing mathematical language



The Singapore-style “maths mastery” approach does not differentiate pupils by ability, instead it allows for all children to learn a concept at the same time without moving onto the next until each and every child has mastered it. Whilst this enables those who grasp mathematical concepts more quickly to practise it in different contexts to reach a greater depth of understanding, it could also be argues that it results in holding back the more academically able pupils. For Gifted and Talented pupils for example, the mastery approach denies them of the opportunity to accelerate through learning to achieve greater knowledge and it may be possible that such children would become disengaged in their maths learning if they are practising the same concept for a number of lessons without progressing. On the other hand, it could have positive effects on the self-esteem of lower ability pupils for them to see no difference in the level of their work and that of their peers.


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