Primary Mastery Specialists

Primary Mastery Specialists are recruited by the Maths Hub to receive training from NCETM and work together to develop their practice. After a year they then go on to run Work Groups. You can find out more information on the NCETM website.

Applications are now OPEN! To register and for more information please visit the NCETM website. Closing date Friday 29th March at 5pm.

Information on each of our current specialists is below: 

Denise Heaton

Primary Mastery Specialist, Developing & Embedding Lead

I have been working in education for 18 years, having previously worked as a research scientist. My love for teaching maths began in the Year 6 classroom navigating ‘unit plans’ and interactive teaching programmes! The pinnacle of all the maths training I have enjoyed since then is undoubtedly my role as a Mastery Specialist. In 2008, I was part of the Maths Specialist Pilot Programme (MaST) and, following this, worked as an SLE for mathematics in my local authority. When the Maths Hubs were created, I was lucky enough to become a Cohort One Mastery Specialist and during my first year of that was part of the Shanghai exchange including providing a host school. I now work as the Teaching for Mastery Lead for the hub and provide support for all our specialists and their schools. Becoming a Primary Mastery Specialist has been the most incredible part of my teaching journey; it has been a privilege to work with so many passionate teachers who put deep, conceptual understanding of mathematics for children at the forefront of everything they do.

Karen Wall

Primary Mastery Specialist and Embedding Lead, Glazebury C of E School

I have always loved maths and, after completing a maths degree many years ago, I felt I was quite a confident mathematician. However, the fantastic training from the Maths Hub has challenged my own understanding of maths and how I teach others. The work with other schools has developed so much more than just maths content; closer links have been made across schools and pedagogy of mastery has led to developments across the curriculum, including a focus on precise language and depth through questioning. I believe all children can succeed in maths. Working with the Maths Hub is a fantastic opportunity to develop your own and others’ CPD.

Victoria Abraham

Primary Mastery Specialist, Wild Bank Primary School

I am fortunate to have worked in my school for over ten years now and have experience of teaching a variety of year groups, including a mixed age class. In my role as Maths Lead, I have enjoyed supporting staff to embed the mastery approach across the school and seeing the impact it has had on both children’s learning and their enthusiasm towards maths. Last year, I successfully led the Lesson Design project and have thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to collaborate with and support other schools on their mastery journey. As a Primary Mastery Specialist, I am excited that I have the chance to continue to develop the practice in my own school whilst supporting other schools and colleagues to embed mastery within their settings.

Rebecca Herbert

Primary Mastery Specialist, Tyntesfield Primary School

I am an experienced Upper KS2 teacher and completed my Primary Mastery Specialist training with Turing NW Maths Hub. This has given me an understanding of the principles of teaching for mastery, while working closely with other schools as part of a Teacher Research Group has enabled me to support other schools in training their staff and developing this approach. During a two week exchange to Shanghai in 2018, I was able to see how careful lesson design and the 5 Big Ideas can be used effectively to lead children to generalisations and help them to understand a concept deeply. It was a pleasure to welcome these teachers to my school in 2019, where they delivered lessons to our pupils on fractions and multiplication. I have enjoyed seeing an impact on the pupils I teach: children seeking out connections between topics and feeling empowered to try and apply their understanding to unfamiliar contexts.

Laura Halpin

Primary Mastery Specialist, Beamont Collegiate Academy

Maths has always been a passion of mine. I have been lucky to have so many opportunities so far in my teaching career but becoming a Mastery Specialist last year was a real achievement. As a school, we worked hard on our Mastery Journey for a number of years and we are still working on this today. We have been lucky to be able to see the benefit it has had on so many children. I believe that all children have the right to succeed at school and it is our job to ensure they have those skills. They need to develop strong mathematical subject knowledge, reasoning and problem solving skills built on strong fluency and fact recall.

As well as being a Mastery Specialist I am also the Assistant Headteacher of a large two form entry school in a deprived area of Warrington. I am very excited to work with other schools so they get to experience that moment of benefit in adopting a mastery approach with their school.