Math in the Middle Institute Partnership


Date of this Version



Math in the Middle Institute Partnership, Heaton/Action Research Project. June 2, 2006.


In this action research study of an eighth grade Math Intervention class, we investigated the following:

• the direct teaching of problem-solving strategies to low achieving students;
• the effect the academic achievement has on these students; and
• students’ perceptions of themselves as problem solvers.

We discovered that students tended to have a positive experience with problem-solving activities when given direct instruction on a variety of strategies. Through the use of a four-point rubric, students’ written responses tended to be more comprehensive about their understanding of the problem. Over a span of four weeks during the spring semester in 2006, the researchers provided instruction on specific problem-solving strategies in Math Intervention class. Then students were given the opportunities to apply these strategies to several "Habits of Mind" problems presented in the Math 8 classrooms. As a result of this research, we plan to expand the current curriculum to include more problem-solving challenges for low achieving students.