Math in the Middle Institute Partnership


Date of this Version



A report on an action research project submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for participation in the Math in the Middle Institute. University of Nebraska-Lincoln. July 2006.


In this action research study I examined the relationship between the teacher, the students and the types of motivation used in mathematics. I specifically studied the mathematic teachers at my school and my seventh grade mathematics students. Motivating middle school students is difficult and the types of motivation can be as numerous as the number of students studied. I discovered that the teachers used multiple motivating tactics from praise, to extra time spent with a student, to extra fun activities for the class. I also discovered that in many instances, the students’ perception of mathematics was predetermined or predetermined by parental perceptions of mathematics. The social environment of the student and a sense of belonging also plays a role in how motivated a student stays. As a result of this research, I plan to notify the mathematics teachers at my school of the most effective types of motivation so we can become a more effective mathematics department.