The impact mentoring relationships in an after -school program has on academic achievement and behavioral growth of elementary -age students

Parthenia Arnita Moore, University of Pennsylvania

Abstract

The mentoring movement in the United States was not new. It began in the 19th century with the Friendly Visiting Program whose purpose was to provide middle-class role models for poor children. The program ended by the beginning of the 20th century but was followed by a program begun by the Men's Club of the Central Presbyterian Church of New York at the end of 1904. That program was Big Brothers and eventually became the Big Brothers/Big Sisters Program. According to Jongyeun (1999) "A mentoring relationship constitutes a social capital that is critical to human development, because it enables students to develop the necessary attitudes, effort, and conception of self that they need to succeed in school and as adults." The purpose of this research was to determine if mentoring in an after school program for elementary age students was associated with improvement in their academics and or behavioral outcomes and to determine how students and their mentors felt about their relationships and other experiences. The experimental group was a group of 30 students in the Teaching, Enriching, and Nourishing (TEN) After School Program that included mentoring and tutoring. The 21 TEN mentors were also a part of the study. A group of 30 students participating in the Extended Programs Learning Opportunities and Recreational Experiences (EXPLORE), an after school program that did not include mentors, was the comparative group. Data was collected for three areas including academic, behavioral and mentoring relationships. The academic data consisted of reading and mathematics report card grades, Pennsylvania System of State Assessments (PSSA) scores and the Wide Range Achievement Test 3 (WRAT 3) scores pre and post the program for the TEN students and post program for the EXPLORE students. The WRAT 3 which was administered post the program for the EXPLORE students. The behavioral data consisted of behavior report card grades, Conner's Feelings, Attitudes and Behavior Scales, Child Depression Inventory and the Conner's Teacher's Rating Scales for students in both after school programs. Finally, the data collected for mentoring relationships consisted of surveys which were completed by the TEN program mentors and the mentees. The academic outcomes demonstrated that the only group difference was in the area of the mean scores for the PSSA Reading results of the TEN students which were significantly higher than the scores for the EXPLORE students. The behavioral outcome demonstrated there was positive improvement in the TEN students' behavior report card grades, however, the differences were not significant. The mentoring function demonstrated that the mentors and mentees were able to develop some relationships. Even though the vi academic and behavioral outcomes did not significantly show that mentoring impacted academic achievement or behavioral growth the caring relationships that formed between the mentors and the mentees were viewed as important for those students whose relationships were positive and whose self-esteem may have also been positively impacted. This study provides some evidence that mentoring should be further studied as an important intervention in after school programs for elementary age students.

Subject Area

Elementary education

Recommended Citation

Moore, Parthenia Arnita, "The impact mentoring relationships in an after -school program has on academic achievement and behavioral growth of elementary -age students" (2006). Dissertations available from ProQuest. AAI3227710.
https://repository.upenn.edu/dissertations/AAI3227710

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