What is MathByExample?

MathByExample is a collection of research-based assignments for grades 4 & 5.  

Typical math assignments give students plenty of practice solving problems but little or no practice with mathematical argumentation.

These are not typical math assignments. MathByExample assignments give students practice solving problems, as well as practice modeling, analyzing, critiquing, and articulating mathematical arguments. Prior studies suggest that MathByExample activities may significantly improve student math learning in Grades 4 and 5. In the current study, WestEd is studying whether MathByExample improves students’ math outcomes more than current instruction in schools across New England.

If these promising findings hold, this product will be made widely available for use by teachers and students.

Goals of this Study

  • Determine whether student outcomes found in smaller studies are similarly found in a large-scale study in schools across New England
  • Help students construct a robust understanding of core mathematics concepts in late elementary grades, preparing them for middle school where math achievement remains historically low
  • Provide practitioners with inexpensive, off-the-shelf solutions to improve math performance 

Teacher Testimonials

“My students greatly enjoyed using this program. They felt that it was a easier way to look at the concepts that they have learned so far this year.”

“My kids like to see that other students … make the same mistakes that they do.”

“They LOVE working in their workbooks!”

“My students really like incorrect work and I think they learn from those mistakes because they can relate to them.”

Benefits of Participation

  • Access to evidence-based workbooks and digital learning materials for free. These materials are designed to be easy to implement, and teachers will be given a brief, free training on using MathByExample. (Teachers in the control condition will get free access to the workbooks and digital assignments in the year following the study.)
  • Contribute to finding out whether new approaches lead to more effective learning.


We are looking for 4th and 5th grade teachers that will be teaching math in the 2024 – 2025 school year in New England.

Study Timeline

  • School Year 2024 – 2025 — 4th and 5th grade teachers and students use MathByExample

Teachers will receive a stipend of up to $800 for time spent attending training, administer and return pre-posttest measures, and complete instructional logs and surveys.