The Work Group is the model of professional and school development used in most Maths Hubs projects. It underlines, and makes real, the ‘C’ in teachers’ CPD.
Implicit in the Work Group’s timeline is also the space and opportunity for participant teachers to influence and lead change in their own schools or departments. The diagram goes into more detail (click/tap diagram to show a larger version):
Overview of a Work Group
- One or two lead participant teachers, representing a small group of schools or maths departments, form the Work Group.
- The Work Group meets several times over the course of a school year. In between, participants keep in touch with each other, comparing notes about what they’re trying out in their own schools. Work Group aims are linked to:
- teachers’ professional learning
- teachers’ practice development
- improving student learning
- improving maths teaching across a whole school or department
- The Work Group Lead is a teacher or former teacher, expert in both the area of maths teaching in question and in leading teacher professional development.
- Each Work Group is part of a national project.
A Maths Hubs Work Group is:
- comprised of a group of schools who work on something together, normally over the large part of a school year, typically with one or two teachers from each school acting as lead participants
- led by a teacher or former teacher, expert both in the area of maths education in question and in leading teacher professional development
- normally part of a national collaborative project, which supports the Work Group Leads and seeks to ensure lessons are learned from around the country.
Schools in every Maths Hub Work Group:
- work towards outcomes linked to teachers’ professional learning, their practice development, the learning of the pupils they teach, and new approaches and policies in maths teaching across their school or department
- maintain a focus on the classroom, often planning, observing and refining lessons together
- evaluate the outcomes of the Work Group’s activity, with collated findings being fed into the national picture and used to inform future work.
In some teaching for mastery projects, the Work Group is sometimes referred to as a Teacher Research Group (TRG). The characteristics of a TRG are exactly the same as a Work Group.