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The Maths Department at Holy Family strives for excellence in all areas. We constantly achieve above the national average in terms of our pupils gaining an A*-C grade. The department is fortunate to have interactive whiteboards in every classroom and a bookable computer suite, to enhance pupils learning through the use of modern technologies.

Year 7 and Year 8

Pupils in Year 7 are taught in their mixed ability form groups. This allows for social development and helps ease the transition from KS2 into KS3. Year 8 are taught in sets appropriate to their ability. Both years 7 and 8 follow the KS3 scheme of work. Each of the four classes in KS3 has 7 lessons per fortnight each for 1 hour.

In year 7, we focus on mastery of number to provide a firm foundation for all of our pupils to succeed. We cover the following topics: operations, rounding (decimals and significant figures), fractions, decimals, percentages, ratio, proportion, indices and roots, standard index form, prime numbers, highest common factors, lowest common multiples and Venn diagrams.

In year 8, we introduce algebra (notation, substitution, simplifying, expanding, factorising and solving), geometry (2D and 3D shape notation, perimeter, area, volume, angles and construction)

Year 9, Year 10 and Year 11

In years 9, 10 and 11, students are taught in sets appropriate to their ability and follow the two-tier GCSE course. Generally the top 2 sets follow the higher tier and the 2 lower sets follow the foundation tier work. Higher or foundation entry will depend on the ability of the pupils in each cohort. The decision for GCSE entry level is made on an individual basis after careful monitoring and discussions between the each class teacher and their individual pupils. GCSE pupils are prepared for the new 9-1 Edexcel examinations (course code - 1MA1), which covers all aspects of number, algebra, geometry, statistics, probability, ratio, proportion and rates of change. Each class in Y9 has 7 lessons per fortnight each for 1 hour, classes in Y10 and Y11 have 8 lessons a fortnight, each for 1 hour.

What does the course involve?

Mathematics is a core subject that provides students with life skills that they will carry forward with them when they leave school. Mathematics will help you to develop mathematical thinking and problem solving skills which are essential attributes for the workplace, business and finance; and for personal decision-making.

It is cross-curricular and you will find that you use some aspects of Mathematics in many other subjects. Mathematics is particularly necessary for understanding Science, Engineering, Technology and Business. You will develop functionality in Mathematics and be able to apply Mathematics to real-life situations.

As students you will develop a series of skills, not restricted to Mathematics, that you will not consciously realise you are employing. These skills will allow you to process information, enquire and reason, be creative and finally, evaluate the information that you are presented with.

The range of learning activities

  • You will develop mathematical communication by solving problems, using mathematical methods, posing questions, and producing reasoned arguments.
  • You will represent problems using appropriate variables, symbols, diagrams and models.
  • You will experience a wide range of learning styles from enthusiastic specialist teachers that incorporate both individual and group activities. You will be encouraged to work independently towards specific learning targets.
  • You will learn how to effectively work as a member of a team, helping one another and giving constructive advice and feedback.

How students will be assessed

Students will follow a GCSE linear course examined at the end of Year 11.Foundation tier covers GCSE Grades 1 - 5 and Higher tier covers GCSE grades 4 - 9. Each tier will consist of 3 papers:

Paper 1   1 hour 30 minutes         Non-calculator paper

Paper 2   1 hour 30 minutes         Calculator paper 

Paper 3   1 hour 30 minutes         Calculator paper

Students will take a tier of entry appropriate to your ability.

We strive to develop a passion for maths through enthusiastic teaching, encouraging an investigative approach to learning and through varied teaching styles. We have a year 7 maths catch-up program and year 8 intervention programs. We see the inclusion of our SEN students as fundamental.

Should you require further information please contact Mrs S Bainbridge, head of maths, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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