Read the following story and see if you relate.
You are teaching students how to solve equations. It's their first time. You love solving equations. You love teaching equations BUT it frustrates you that students either resist using your algebraic method or become uninspired, or both. You are confident of the quality of the algebraic method you teach your students to use. 
What do I mean "Step 1 usually backfires"?
The above approach should work, correct? Your students should be 'flying' from the first lesson, happily solving equations because the algebraic method you teach them works! And they learn the algebraic method on the easy equations and then perfect the method as they progress to increasingly harder equations.
However, not enough students 'fly' during the first lesson. Instead, many students resist, and many students do not get 'bitten' by the pleasure of solving equations. Correct? Why Step 1 usually backfires
When you are first teaching your algebraic method to a new class of students and you use an easy equation such as 'Find the value for m when m + 3 = 5', you find that many students complain about having to follow your algebraic method.

Students resist because they don't see a need for the algebraic method!
And they don't see a need for your algebraic method BECAUSE THERE IS NO NEED FOR YOUR ALGEBRAIC METHOD  at this early stage in their learning! Students can see the answer to 'm + 3 = 5' is 2, and they feel good about the fact that they can see the solution. In their minds they see no point in learning a 'balance method' for solving equations even when you say "I'm teaching you this method on the easy equations because you'll need it when the equations become difficult." 
"When you don't create a need in students to learn what it is you are trying to teach them, the chances of your students learning that information are greatly reduced." Creating a need to learn in students is a critical key to teaching mathematics successfully and is explored in detail through the course 'Engagement  Winning over your mathematics class'. 

In my experience, the difference between teaching equations traditionally  as described
at the top of this page  and teaching equations using the NeedLevelsChoice Approach
was as different as ... well ... cats and potatoes!
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