Meagen Adams

Thinking Through Mathematical Application Problems

The action research project sought to investigate the efficacy of integrating the Deeper Learning “Math Tools” strategy in improving student performance on the Measures of Academic Progress (MAP) test. The study addressed a recognized challenge of low student achievement in mathematics, particularly evident in MAP test scores. The central research question examines whether the utilization of the ‘Math Tools’ strategy leads to significant improvements in student outcomes. The methodology involved a structured intervention plan where the classroom teacher received training and support in implementing the “math tools” strategy within the classrooms. Pre- and post-assessment data from MAP tests, supplemented by observations of classroom instruction and student feedback, form the basis of analysis. Beginning and end of the year MAP test data were the main components used to compare student performance before and after the intervention, determining the magnitude of any observed changes. In summary, despite the ease of implementing the “math tools” strategy, the data analysis yielded inconclusive results regarding its effectiveness. Among the classes observed, two showed improvements in meeting the growth goal, one class demonstrated slight improvement but fell short of the growth goal, and one class experienced a decrease in their average scores. This mixed outcome suggests that while the strategy has merits, its impact on student achievement, as measured by the MAP test, is uncertain. The inconclusive findings highlight the complexity of assessing the effectiveness of instructional strategies in diverse classroom settings. Factors such as teacher implementation fidelity, student engagement, and contextual influences may have contributed to the variability in outcomes observed across classes. Despite the lack of definitive conclusions, the project underscores the importance of ongoing reflection and refinement of instructional practices to better meet the needs of students. Overall, while the data may not offer clear-cut answers, the project highlights the value of action research in informing instructional decision-making and promoting continuous improvement in educational practice.

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