Years 5-8 Continuity (Reasoning and algebraic thinking focus) - Online - 1245-1530

Tuesday 26 April, Friday 20 May, Tuesday 7 June, Friday 17 June, Tuesday 28 June Online

We welcome bookings from Year 5 or Year 6 teachers from primary schools with a teacher from a linked secondary school.

This new reasoning and algebraic thinking focus provides an opportunity for linked primary and secondary schools that worked together on the Bar Modelling and Multiplicative Reasoning Work Group to rekindle their collaborative mathematical professional development to improve continuity for pupils. Participation in this Work Group guarantees direct collaborative opportunities beween secondary and their linked primary schools, with normal transition arrangements having not been possible in Spring and Summer 2020 or 2021.

Participants' feedback from the first two cohorts this year has been completely positive, including:

  • 'Collaborating and discussing mathematics with colleagues from different phases, including in breakout rooms, has been great.'
  • 'It has really made me think about my practice and how I can use vocabulary and the resources available with the NCETM.'
  • 'I have become more aware of the importance of langauge and asking the right questions to extend pupils.'
  • 'It has made me thing more deeply about the smaller steps of Teaching for Mastery.'
  • 'The support offered by the Work Group leaders and other teachers has been superb.'

Teachers will work together with specifically designed algebraic thinking classroom materials to bring research on the effective learning into teachers' classroom practice. These will be augmented by a collaborative focus on NCETMs new Checkpoint materials. Participants will develop understanding of algebra and develop a consistent approach to it through discussion, joint lesson design and delivery, observation and the development of documentation to support continuity.

The materials focus on deepening understanding of:

  • Equivalence
  • Specific structure
  • General structure
  • Comparing expressions


Dietmar Küchemann has been working with the resouce development team for this project.

Teachers from different phases will work together to improve communication between Key Stages 2 & 3 and strengthen the transition from primary to secondary school by focussing on curriculum and pedagogical continuity over Years 5 to 8. Central to the Work Group is the promotion of cross phase communication between teachers to address issues of maths knowledge and learning transition as distinct from pastoral considerations.

Who will be leading the group?

Jo Makin-Isherwood

Jo has been Primary Teaching for Mastery Lead for CODE Maths Hub, progressing as an Accredited NCETM PD Lead and Primary Specialist. She worked with Early Years, KS1 and KS2 classes, including mixed age classes, before becoming Maths Subject lead and Senior Leader, including extensive SEND experience.

Who is it for?

Year 5 or Year 6 teachers from primary schools with a teacher from a linked secondary school.

All participants will work collaboratively to achieve consistent approaches in cross-phase transition. Encouraging link Primary/Secondary School to register a delegate to support collaborative development of coherent learning approaches in transition to support pupils' progression is desirable.

Please get in touch with the Maths team from your local primary or secondary schools to see if they are interested in working collaboratively for this work group. Please list schools in your primary/secondary partnerships when booking.

What are the intended outcomes?

Pupil outcomes

  • pupils in KS2 and KS3 demonstrate a positive attitude to maths
  • KS3 pupils show improved understanding of the chosen topics, based on strong connection with KS2 foundations.

Whole school/departmental policies and approaches

  • collaboration between primary and secondary colleagues on issues of curriculum and pedagogy is a normal part of the school’s transition practice (and policy)
  • curriculum planning at KS3 is better informed by KS2 content
  • curriculum planning at KS2 identifies the priority learning which underpins the KS3 curriculum.

Practice development

  • participants make use of common approaches, representations and language across phases
  • lesson design and pedagogy demonstrate a secure knowledge of curriculum continuity.

Professional learning

  • participants and the teachers they work with in their schools have a deeper knowledge and understanding of the curriculum across KS2 and KS3, and the expectations of pupils at the end of each key stage in algebra.
  • participants have a deeper understanding of the approaches which will support pupils as they move from KS2 to KS3, including the importance of consistency of language and representations in algebra.

What will it involve?

Participation in five afternoon workshops and completion of school-based learning tasks between workshops.

Participation in this Work Group has the potential to meet all 8 recommendations from EEFs Improving Mathematics in Key Stages Two and Three report


What is the cost?