Marina Branco, maths lead at Primrose Hill Primary in North London, uses the maths mastery method with her pupils.
“There’s a lot of misconceptions about the mastery method. I was one of those people with misconceptions, too: I thought it was going to be very rigid and all about rote learning,” she says.
“But there was an opportunity to try something that was being successful somewhere else, and try to implement that into our curriculum.
“The first time I observed a mastery lesson, I was like, ‘It’s quite slow.’ But it’s broken into parts: you teach, you learn, you apply; you teach, you learn, you apply.
“The children see the benefits of slowing down. It’s not about speeding through lots of sums – zooming through numbers and not thinking about what they mean or how they relate to other maths topics. The children have found it really interesting to see that maths is all about links. It’s not just separate topics. If you know one thing, you know a lot more. It’s making sure children are grounded in their understanding.”