In the Prep department, we seek to ensure that all pupils develop an understanding and enjoyment of Maths. This is done through providing a stimulating and challenging mathematical environment, using differentiated tasks in order to interest and motivate pupils of all abilities. This enables everyone to succeed, whatever their individual needs. Their learning is enriched through a variety of individual, paired and group tasks; thus promoting the discussion of mathematical ideas. Problem solving and investigations are also practised to encourage pupils to make connections across mathematical ideas and to develop reasoning and competence in solving increasingly sophisticated problems.


Homework is given weekly in Prep 1 to Prep 4 (Year 3 to Year 6). Time spent on homework should be approximately:
Prep 1 (Year 3) – 20 minutes
Prep 2 (Year 4) – 20 – 30 minutes
Prep 3 (Year 5) – 30 minutes
Prep 4 (Year 6) – 30 – 40 minutes

All homework is designed to consolidate work done in class and is differentiated to match understanding. Homework also provides parents with an invaluable opportunity to be involved in their son or daughter’s learning. Some will invariably work through homework tasks more easily than others. Parents are asked to enable their son or daughter to do what is reasonable and to seek further clarification from their Maths teacher when necessary.

Timetabling and Setting

The timetable allocation for Maths is as follows:
Prep 1 (Year 3) – 5 x 1 hour lessons per week
Prep 2 (Year 4) – 5 x 1 hour lessons per week
Prep 3 (Year 5) – 4 x 1 hour lessons per week
Prep 4 (Year 6) – 4 x 1 hour lessons per week

Prep 1 and 2 are taught in class groups, with a small group needing a little extra reinforcement taken from both classes to make up a smaller set, taught by a third teacher.
Prep 3 and 4 are taught in sets according to their ability.


Assessment is an integral part of all Maths teaching. Progress is continually monitored throughout their time in the Prep School.

Testing takes place once per term. In addition to this, Prep 4 take the Entrance Test for Senior School in the Easter term. Results of termly tests are given to, and discussed with, parents at Parents’ Evening.

Other Events

Throughout the year, we enter teams to take part in the following Maths events:

Birkdale Senior School Year 6 Maths Quiz
National Young Mathematicians’ Awards (NRICH)
The Sheffield Pop Maths Quiz (Sheffield Hallam University)
The National Key Stage Two Maths Quiz Championship

In 2017, our Prep 4 teams were regional winners of the National Young Mathematicians’ Awards. They also won the Sheffield Pop Maths Quiz and reached the National Finals of the National Key Stage 2 Maths Quiz Championship in Oxford.

Curriculum Plan

For full details of the Maths Curriculum Plan please click here




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