Enhancing peer culture in a primary school classroom

Year: 2002

Author: Sullivan, Anna

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

Enabling peer culture, as opposed to adult culture, to emerge and flourish in classrooms is important because it has been shown to enhance student motivation and learning. This descriptive study examined how a primary teacher enabled students to develop and maintain a peer culture so that it coexists with the school culture. Ethnographic techniques were used to collect data in one primary school classroom. The findings showed that the teacher's beliefs and the establishment of structures, processes and an environment conducive to empowering students are central to peer culture. The study highlighted the importance of peer culture in enabling students to pursue and coordinate multiple goals.