Achievement can be seen as a byproduct of effort. When students do not try, they are not producing at their highest potential. Conversely, when students put in high levels of effort, achievement does tend to increase overall.1
Peer Role Models:
Educators can create a supportive learning environment by. . . [providing] role models who have shown effort and persistence through challenges.2
Middle school students in general need more independence as they grow older and many place a higher value on peer opinions than adult opinions.3
Pursuit of prosocial and social responsibility goals also explains, in part, significant links between peer acceptance and academic achievement.4
. . .perceived social and emotional support from peers have been associated with motivational outcomes such as the pursuit of academic and prosocial goals, intrinsic value, and self-concept.5,6,7,8
. . .much of the previous research linking adult and peer support to academic outcomes in middle school has been conducted with minority, lower-class, inner-city, or low- achieving students.9,10,11 . . . evidence that supportive and caring relationships are important for White, middle-class students as well.12
1. Richard L. Curwin, (2010) Meeting Students Where They Live: Motivation in Urban Schools. Association
for Supervision and Curriculum Development
2. Kristin Geiser, Christina O’Guinn LEAD AUTHORS (2010) Youth
in the Middle:Envisioning and Implementing a
Whole-School Youth Development Approach.A guide for
middle school leaders. p. 99.
3. Kristin Geiser, Christina O’Guinn LEAD AUTHORS (2010) Youth in the Middle:Envisioning and Implementing a Whole-School Youth
Development Approach.A guide for middle school
leaders. p. 94.
4. Wentzel, K. R. (1991). Relations between social competence and academic achievement in early adolescence. Child Development, 62, 1066-1078.
5. DuBois, D. L., Felner, R. D., Brand, S., Adan, A. M., & Evans, E. G. (1992). A prospective study of life stress, social support, and adaptation in early adolescence. Child Development, 63, 542-557.
6. Felner, R. D., Aber, M. S., Primavera, J., & Cauce, A. M. (1985). Adaptation and vulnerability in high-risk adolescents: An examination of environmental mediators. American Journal of Community Psychology, 13, 365-379.
(1996). Teacher and classmate influences on scholastic motivation, self-steem, and level of voice in adolescents. In J. Juvonen & K. R. Wentzel
(Eds.), Social motivation: Understanding children's school adjustment (pp.
8. Wentzel, K. R. (1994). Relations of social goal pursuit to social acceptance, classroom behavior, and perceived social support. Journal of Educational Psychology, 86, 173-82.
9. Cauce,A. M., Felner, R. D., & Primavera, J. (1982). Social support in high-risk adolescents: Structural components and adaptive impact. American Journal of Community Psychology, 10, 417- 428.
10 Felner, R. D., Aber, M. S., Primavera, J., & Cauce, A. M. (1985). Adaptation and vulnerability in high-risk adolescents: An examination of environmental mediators. American Journal of Community Psychology, 13, 365-379.
11. Phelan, P., Davidson, A. L., & Cao, H. T. (1991). Students' multiple worlds: Negotiating the boundaries of family, peer, and school cultures. Anthropology and Education Quarterly, 22, 224-250.
12. Wentzel, K. R, (1998). Social relationships and Motivation in Middle School: Ther role of parents, teachers, and Peers. Journal of Educational Psychology., 90, 202-209.