Here are some preliminary results from one indicator in the Pearson Foundation's Million Voice Project:
Carol Dweck (1986) pointed out some students attribute success in school to one of four causes:
- internal stable (I'm smart/I'm stupid)
- internal unstable (I work hard/I'm lazy)
- external stable (I go to a good school/I go to a bad school)
- external unstable (the teacher likes me/the teacher doesn't like me)
Does it chill you, as it does me, that one of the slippery slopes our students are on in schools is giving less and less effort from year to year? Nine out of ten (90%) 6th graders report that they put forth their best effort at school. From that height, students slide down hill until just two-thirds of 12th graders report that they put forth their best effort. Keep in mind this is a self-assessment. These are not kids trying to snow us with feigned effort when we can see they are not really trying. One in three students is telling us they are not putting forth their best effort. "I know I could try harder, but I don't or won't." Never mind where a kid who admits that is from; where is a kid who admits that going?