Belhaven Hill School

Co-ed Boarding & Day School for ages 5-13



The essence of mathematics is not to make simple things complicated, but to make complicated things simple.

(Stan Gudder)

Maths at Belhaven is ...

  • great because you get to do challenging work
  • the best because if you find things hard the teacher really helps you
  • the best subject
  • not too easy but not too hard
  • fun because we use the activities on the IWB to help us understand topics

‘What if maths teachers are really pirates and they only want us to find x to help them locate the treasure?’

The underlying aim of the department is to make Maths enjoyable and to teach it through understanding.

To see what the children get up to click here

Different teachers use a variety of methods and materials in order to bring the subject alive and to make the study of Maths interesting, engaging, challenging, rewarding and fun.  

Alongside formal teaching, practical work is encouraged, computers are used as teaching aids and investigations are introduced when possible, as are puzzles and games and a broad range of opportunities on the Interactive Whiteboards.

In Forms 6, 5 and 4, pupils are taught by their Form teacher and follow a syllabus which is closely linked to the English National Curriculum and Scottish Curriculum for Excellence. From Form 3 upwards, children are taught in sets based on their ability, whereby a child may either be challenged or is able to consolidate the basics. In whichever set a child may be, our aim is to ensure that each child reaches their full potential in Maths, gaining a sound understanding of numeracy which they can transfer to other subjects and in everyday life.

Every effort is made to ensure that children are confident and numerate by the time they leave Belhaven and that they are able to sit the Common Entrance examination with success - whether they attempt the foundation, standard or higher tier paper.

Wherever possible, the children are given the opportunity to take Maths outside the classroom, whether it be measuring the area and perimeter of the games field, working out averages based on a survey or simply looking for shapes in the school grounds. Each year, Form 1 take a morning out in Edinburgh to look at the everyday Maths that can be found walking up the Royal Mile – looking for shapes, calculating the height of monuments, working out problems relating to the archway of Canongate Kirk, or the circumference of the Kirk window.

The only way to learn maths, is to do maths.

(Paul Halmos)