The topic I originally planned to look into for my Action Research Paper was the affect of reward systems on a student's academic performance. My idea was that a student's performance could be influenced by the presence of a reward system. I was interested in seeing if certain subject areas were more likely to use such systems than other subject areas. I strived to see if a student's academic performance could mean more than just their exam scores and ability to complete assignments. I wished to see if a reward system could change the way a student was motivated in the classroom; to see if their overall attitude could be changed. I also thought to look into their attendance in classes where motivation was present. I wanted to see if they were less frequently absent and if they participated more. And lastly, I thought it would be interesting to see if students felt they could in turn change their "destiny" in education, or if they simply believed they are predestined for something else.
As I was looking further into my topic at hand, I decided to go a different way with my paper. I got away from the "reward system" and decided to look into student motivation as my topic, focusing on the teacher-student relationship. In high school, I can remember one teacher that changed the way I saw science and it affected me greatly. Before this teacher, although I was always in advanced science classes, I never achieved high grades. I always struggled to keep up with other students, and when I performed poorly on exams, my previous teachers never thought to why I had done so. She approached science in a way I had never seen before, and she offered recognition and praise. She set up the classroom in such a way that I never felt I was being left behind, and she encouraged us always to work up to our potential, and then some. I was motivated to do well and in a way I had never cared for before.
I chose to look from the student's point of... [continues]
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