What effect does an extra-curricular physical activities program have on the behavioral ratings and academic performance of adolescent males in a residential setting?
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SubjectAchievement motivation in adolescence.; Group homes for youth.; Adolescent psychology.; Behavioral assessment of teenagers.; Youth centers.; Motivation in education
What effect does an extra-curricular physical activities program have on the behavioral ratings and academic performance of a small group of adjudicated youth in a rural residential school? That was the primary question addressed in this project. Four male adolescent residents of a Special Act School participated in an after-school program designed to engage them in formal physical exercises, organized games, and structured partner- and team-building activities. The students' school-related behavior was then monitored before, during, and after the program was initiated. Present findings indicated that there were slight but positive improvements in all four students’ behavioral ratings and academic performance over time. Previous research has shown a positive correlation between student participation in organized physical activities and academic success, lower truancy rates, less consumption of unhealthy products, and fewer physical altercations. Implications for research and practice are offered.