Reinforcing Effort:
Research shows that the level of belief in self-efficacy plays a strong role in motivation for learning and achievement. The instructional strategy of reinforcing effort enhances students' understanding of the relationship between effort and achievement by addressing their attitudes and beliefs about learning.

9697549_b36ea61a69_m.jpg McREL's research on reinforcing effort supports the following generalizations:
  1. Not all students realize the importance of believing in effort.
  2. Students can learn to operate from a belief that effort pays off even if they do not initially have this belief.

Based on these findings, consider these recommendations for classroom practice:
  1. Explicitly teach students about the importance of effort.
  2. Have students keep track of their effort and achievement.

Spreadsheet Software
One easy way to help students make the connection between effort and achievement is by using a spreadsheet.
  1. Find or create a rubric that gives students a clear idea of what effort looks like.
  2. Review the rubric with students to ensure they all have an understanding of each category.

Participants in the August 5-8 session found the Effort Rubric on page 157 to be especially helpful. This is an area of student success that requires attention and this rubric is a great way to explicitly teach students about expectations. Possible uses for the rubric include: self-directed parent teacher conferences, making a poster for the classroom, sharing with parents at Back To School Night.

This list of online spreadsheet tools may be helpful:

Data Collection Tools
A powerful way to convince studetns that effort is truly tied to achievement is to show them data - not just data on themselves, but als combined data on groups that they associate themselves with. When students have well0known or personal stories from which to learn, effort is reinforced, and students begin to take more responsibility for their own success.

Image Source: Flickr user Pulpolux !!!