Maths No Problem

Maths No Problem
A Guide for Parents

“We believe that every child can master an understanding and love of Maths with the right kind of teaching and support. We want you to join our mission to build the confidence of the nation’s Maths teacher and learners.” Maths No Problem (2016.)

What is Maths No Problem (MNP)?
Maths No Problem is a series of textbooks and workbooks written to meet the requirements of the 2014 English National Curriculum. The MNP Primary Series was assessed by the Department for Education’s (DfE’s) expert panel, which judged that it met the core criteria for a high-quality textbook to support teaching for mastery. As a result, the MNP Primary Series are recommended textbooks for schools.

What is Maths Mastery?
Teaching maths for mastery is a transformational approach to maths teaching which stems from high performing Asian nations such as Singapore. When taught to master maths, children develop their mathematical fluency without resorting to rote learning and are to solve non-routine maths problems without having to memorise procedures.

Why use MNP?
The Maths No Problems approach is at the heart of our maths curriculum and adapted to suit our pupils. The textbooks are skilfully designed by expert authors. They contain carefully varied questions and examples which:
• Are easy for pupils to engage with while still containing challenging components;
• Encourage pupils to think about maths;
• Deepen pupils’ understanding and reveal misconceptions.
The scheme has the concrete-pictorial-abstract (CPA) method at its heart which encourages children to use and discover through the use of equipment (concrete – such as cubes or tens and ones blocks), then they progress to representing this is picture form (pictorial) and finally moving on to the abstract stage which uses equations and mathematical symbols. The CPA approach allows all children to access maths and deepens their understanding of key topics, enabling them to make crucial links between topics and develop their mathematical thinking, ability and confidence.

Who will be following the programme?
All children from Y1 to Y6 will be following the MNP programme.

What does a lesson look like?
Lessons and activities are designed to encourage children to become more fluent in their problem-solving and encourage a higher level of thinking in maths in order to deepen understanding and master concepts. Concepts merge from one chapter to the next. Chapters are then broken down into individual lessons. Lessons are typically broken down into five parts.

The parts to a lesson are:
1. Anchor Task (In Focus Task) – the entire class spends time on a question guided by the teacher. The children are encouraged during this time to think collaboratively of as many ways as possible to solve the question. Their ideas are then shared with the class.

2. Let’s Learn – this focuses on the concept during the In-Focus task in more detail and with different mathematical examples.
3. Journaling  – part of the lesson where children develop their reasoning and problem-solving skills to discuss and solve the "In-Focus" task. It is in their journal that children can show their understanding and can "dive deeper" into the task to stretch and challenge themselves. 

4. Guided Practice – the children practise new ideas in groups, pairs or individually guided by the teacher. They have access to any concrete resources they require or choose to use a more pictorial or abstract approach. Misconceptions are dealt with at this time.

5. Independent Practice (Workbook) – children practice on their own. Once children have mastered the concept, they use their reasoning and problem-solving skills to develop their depth of learning by completing questions in their workbook.
The structure of the lessons is not rigid and teachers choose when and how to change the structure depending on both the lesson and the class. This allows more time when needed for, say, guided practice or journaling. 
Below is a link to several videos designed to help you, the parents, understand how some of the fundamental elements of mathematics are taught through Maths No Problem. 
They will help you when helping your children with their homework and you may even learn a few methods or ideas yourselves!