Summary: Many middle school students approach math with caution, often trepidation, and generally less-than-complete confidence. Several factors contribute to their views of what math actually is (a system of rules to follow and formulas to apply) as well as who might be good at it (people who can see the path to an answer and calculate quickly). A few say they “just aren’t math people” ‒ something which is false. Students at this age are immersed in forming their identity, including their mathematics identity. At a time when they might be embracing math as a powerful tool for reading their world, young people can instead succumb to fixed mindsets, the perpetuation of math myths, and a compromised relationship with math, thus affecting their school and career trajectory for the rest of their lives. Middle school math teachers have a unique opportunity to steer their students’ mathematical development in a more positive direction. This article presents strategies to help teachers support the emergence of their students’ math identities. (ERIC)