Math in the Middle Institute Partnership


Date of this Version



Math in the Middle Institute Partnership, Action Research Project Report, in partial fulfillment of the MA Degree. Department of Teaching, Learning, and Teacher Education. University of Nebraska-Lincoln. July 2008.


In this action research study of eighth grade mathematics, I investigated my students’ use of writing and solving word problems. I collected data to determine if writing and solving word problems would have a positive effect on students’ abilities to understand and solve word problems. These word problems are grade-level appropriate and are very similar to the problems on the eighth grade online assessment of state standards. Pre- and post-test data, weekly word problems that focus on specific mathematics topics, beginning and end surveys about word problem perceptions, and a teacher journal reveal that student engagement in this weekly practice of writing and solving word problems did influence the students’ overall abilities for, achievement in and attitudes toward solving word problems. Except for some students’ perceptions, the influence was largely positive. This suggests that word problems can be a constructive feature in eighth mathematics instruction.