Lessons learnt and next steps

  • Date: September 2010
  • Programme: Initial teacher training (ITT)
  • Topic/theme: Leading partners in mathematics
  • Number in series: 8
  • School name: Kingston University

This project demonstrated the potential to promote effective practice, through students' improved understanding of guided group work, to develop HQT. In addition, the opportunity for students to work collaboratively with teachers and tutors, unassessed, encouraged greater creativity and 'risk-taking' to the benefit of all.


It is hoped that the schools and the local authority involved will form the basis of a stronger partnership with the university mathematics department to collaborate on the improvement of mathematics teaching and learning of our students through the taught programmes and school experience. Developments will be disseminated to a wider audience.

Centre-based learning

More explicit reference will be made to the use of resources to stimulate mathematical talk. It will be necessary to model guided group work during taught sessions. Finally, the use of effective questioning, response and other intervention techniques can also be modelled to enhance the quality of mathematical talk in the classroom.

School-based training and mentoring

A collaborative approach (with teachers and mentors) to develop models of effective guided group work and HQT would be useful for students on school experience. There will be specific requirements for students to plan for guided group work in mathematics. Guidance on areas of subject and pedagogic knowledge to support mentors giving feedback may also be beneficial.

Core areas of mathematics

The key lessons learned in relation to the core areas of mathematics are: the importance of developing mathematical vocabulary; linking the concrete to abstract concepts in all areas of mathematics through the use of resources; encouraging exploratory as well as presentational talk; development of questioning, response and intervention strategies.

Next steps

Ideally, the opportunity could have been extended to all students in the second year of their degree course to focus upon the development of HQT through guided group work in mathematics, by making it part of the course programme – with additional days in school.