I decided to choose extra-curricular activities and student achievement as my action research project because as a coach I have always wondered if students perform better if they are involved in an extra-curricular activity. I have been coaching and teaching for nineteen years and have deduced that achievement is higher in students that do something productive outside of the school day. It could be playing in the band, participating in UIL activities, cheerleading, sports, dancing, chess, robotics, and any other activity that follows the standards of the “No Pass-No Play.” Students tend to work harder on grades and on tests if they know they will not be allowed to participate in their extra-curricular activity. I am currently doing research by getting information from various websites that will further foster my idea that extra-curricular activities increase student performance.
I decided to do a study on our high school football and volleyball teams to see their performance on standardized tests, attendance, grades, discipline, and benchmark testing. I will need to gather information from our PEIMS clerk, attendance office, testing coordinators, and discipline centers to get all the data that will help me prove my theory. I will compare these student-athletes with the students who are not involved in an extra-curricular activity on all the data mentioned above. I also decided to look at a male and female group to show that the data will be the same in comparing the both sexes. I have been working on my project for only about fifteen hours because of my coaching, teaching, family, and masters responsibilities. I plan on working more during the open week between my classes and will finish the bulk of my research and internship plan during the summer when I will be free from teaching and coaching. I have learned a lot from my first three classes that will help me develop my action plan, and I look forward to the upcoming classes to continue my research.