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Whitehouse Primary School, 2 Doagh Rd, Newtownabbey

Using Mathematics (Numeracy)


Mathematics is all around us each day at home, in school and in the wider world.  From adding up the cost of shopping, to considering the probability of our actions or simply reading a timetable to catch a bus.  To make our pupils mathematically confident is essential for them to have a happy and successful life.

Therefore, as a school we have invested significantly in developing these skills.  Our work with pupils falls within these general themes:

  • Number work and Algebra;
  • Shape and Space;
  • Measurement (e.g. time, weight and length);
  • Data Handling (i.e. graphs, table and charts);
  • Problem solving (i.e. applying their knowledge to real world situations or/and using a number of skills to solve a challenge set). 

Our intention, however, is that our pupils' learning will go beyond skills they can do. We want our pupils to have a joy and excitement about mathematics. It would be our hope that our approach to mathematics will promote an interest in number and all aspects of numeracy.

Why do we call numeracy 'Using Mathematics'? First of all, this is the term used in the Northern Ireland Curriculum. However, and fairly obviously, it also indicates the curricular demand that our pupils are able to see the purpose and use of their mathematical skills in the real world.  By seeing these connections it will make mathematics more relevant and accessible for all our pupils. 

Miss Campbell is the Numeracy Leaders in our school.

What are some of the indicators in our work that demonstrates our commitment to the development of Using Mathematics?
We have an excellent Numeracy Team who are committed to the promotion of Using Mathematics;
We have heavily invested in numeracy materials;
We each year have a 'Money Week' to promote numeracy skills and stress their links with the real world,
We have introduced Numicon across the school and provide Numicon interventions for some pupils who need extra help;
We believe our data would indicate that our pupils are achieving above what is expected for similar schools across Northern Ireland.