At The Darlington Arena on Tuesday 27 June 136 mathematics colleagues from across the region gathered for Archimedes NE Maths Hub’s Summer Conference. With several highly respected speakers and skilled professional leading sessions throughout the day, delegates were treated to a master class of mathematical experiences.

Delegates were welcomed by Archimedes NE Maths Hub Lead, Rose-Marie Rochester, who eloquently set the scene for the day. Mathematics facilitators from across England would be interspaced around the core part of the day: two live lessons, one primary and one secondary, for delegates to experience, using a Teaching for Mastery Research Group (TRG) model.

The opening keynote was delivered by Steve Wren, Ofsted’s Subject Lead for Mathematics. During the presentation, Steve explained some of the issues that mathematics leaders may consider when developing a curriculum to engineer mathematical success. Steve offered practical advice based on specific examples to help and support colleagues in their curriculum design and implementation; specifically, to meet the needs of the pupils in their school.

A question-and-answer session ended this highly informative and entertaining insight into the world of mathematics teaching and learning, through the Ofsted lens.

Delegates witnessed Year 6 pupils from St Augustine’s Catholic Primary School, Bishop Hogarth Catholic Education Trust, being taught a ratio lesson, taken from the NCETM spine materials, delivered by primary teaching for mastery specialist, Sarah Coates.

Simultaneously, secondary colleagues were treated to a lesson on probability by secondary mastery specialist Emma Brooksbank and her pupils from St Peter’s Catholic College, part of Nicholas Postgate Catholic Academy Trust.

Each session concluded with the teacher explaining, in detail the design of the lesson, the reasons for the choices they made regarding mathematical content, use of resources, questioning and pupil responses. The intent was to provide delegates with a Teaching for Mastery experience that they could engage in and share back in their own school.


During the break, guests were able to visit a variety of stands from a vast range of exhibitors, including Schools North East, Oxford University Press, Carmel Teacher Training Partnership, AMSP and many of the DfE funded curriculum hubs. Some exhibitors were generous enough to donate prizes for the raffle!

After lunch, guests were once again invited to one of two phase specific sessions. Tom Manners, Specialist Leader in Education, kicked things off with his talk “How to make problem-solving less problematic.” Dr Debbie Morgan CBE, Director of Primary Mathematics at the National Centre for Excellence in the Teaching of Mathematics (NCETM) shared her renowned experience and expertise with guests during her “greater depth” session. Both speakers kept guests thoroughly engaged with their thought-provoking topics and interactive delivery.

The day concluded with a summary and vote of thanks by Rose-Marie Rochester before the winners of the raffle were announced.

Rose-Marie Rochester, Archimedes NE Maths Hub Lead had this to say about the event: “Our live lessons showed exactly what we are about as a maths hub, with our pupils at the heart of what we do. Our exceptionally skilled mastery specialists and their carefully crafted lessons have ensured colleagues have come away knowing not just what teaching for mastery is but what it looks like in the classroom. Our teachers did a marvellous job at showcasing our work but not without the engagement and courage of our young people being observed by so many. Steve Wren as ever, provided colleagues with reassurance and suggested focusing on the mathematics and what is going on in classrooms as the best preparation for inspections. Debbie Morgan’s focus on greater depth has helped teachers and leaders realise that teaching for mastery is for all.

One delegate echoed these thoughts saying: “A fantastic day, seamlessly planned which has given me so much food for thought to take away and inspire change moving forwards in my school. Thank you!