Shared Maths is a form of cross-age peer tutoring, developed at Durham University, where older pupils (Year 5/Year 6) work with younger pupils (Year 3/Year 4) to discuss and work through maths problems using a structured approach. The intervention structures interactions between the two pupils to enable the younger pupils (the tutee) to find solutions to maths problems. The older pupils (the tutor) use strategies such as questioning, thinking out loud, praise, and reviewing strategies to gain a deeper understanding of mathematics.
The intervention was delivered by teachers, with training and support from a Local Co-ordinator in each of four participating local authorities (Leeds, Medway, Durham and Worcester). Participating pupils spent 20 minutes each week using the approach, for two blocks of 16 weeks over consecutive years.
An effectiveness trial assessed the impact of the project on the progress in terms of mathematics of 6,472 pupils (3,305 in Year 3 and 3,167 in Year 5) in 82 primary schools across four local authorities with 40 schools randomly allocated to receive the programme and 42 schools allocated to the control condition. The control schools received the intervention after the intervention schools had completed the project.