Date of Award


Document Type

Action Research Project

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Education



First Advisor

Julie Coopet


Curriculum and Instruction


This paper explored four techniques middle school educators used to increase the academic success and engagement of Native American and low-income students in the classrooms. Two researchers studied the effects of relationship building and culturally relevant writing curriculum on student engagement. The other two researchers studied the effects of vocabulary instruction and differentiated assessments on student academic success. Twenty four Native American or low income students in grades 6 through 8 were studied. Data was collected through student surveys, observations, and assessment results to determine the effectiveness of these four strategies. The researchers found that the relationship building and culturally relevant writing curriculum were effective tools in increasing student engagement. Academic vocabulary strategies documented an increase in student academic success. Differentiated assessments did not have an impact on student academic success. Teachers can benefit from the success of these strategies in addition to their current methods of teaching to help their Native American and low income students stay on task in class and succeed academically.

Included in

Education Commons