Using Active Learning Strategies to Motivate Students

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  • 1 Teaches eighth-grade mathematics at VandenBerge Junior High School in Elk River, , MN 55330.

Icouldn't believe my ears when i heard a colleague make this statement during my first year of teaching: “Eighth grade is the year that the students' brains are turned off.” Was it true? Were eighth-grade students really that hopeless? In my early years of teaching, I was on a mission to be the best mathematics teacher I could be by incorporating problem solving, reasoning, communication, and mathematical connections into each lesson. I wanted to take time to involve my students personally so that they could see how mathematics directly affects their lives. However, I quickly learned that there is “no one way to be a topnotch teacher” (Harmin 1998, p. 2).


KIMBERLY BOYER interested in problem solving and motivational strategies and enjoys implementing activities that actively engage her students in learning.

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Mathematics Teaching in the Middle School
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