I. I became interested in this topic because my entire academic life has been filled with pressure from my parents. This pressure was mainly in school and grades, and in high school, the amount of pressure increased dramatically. This is because my parents now realized that everything in high school counts towards college. When I first came to high school, my grades were not as good as they were in middle school. I needed a little time to adapt to high school before I could improve my grades. During this time, my parents became upset because I brought home a report card that was not as good as they were expecting. Then I really noticed the pressure getting higher and higher. I did not only notice this with me, but I noticed this with many of my friends. I heard phrases like “My parents are going to kill me” and “I’m going to be grounded for 10 years” many times so when the opportunity to do research on this came up, I chose this as my subject.
II. How does parental pressure influence students in high school? If there is an influence, is it positive or negative? I would like to do research on this because it raised my curiosity. For me personally, I do better in school if I am calm and have little pressure, but there might be students out there at Ramapo High School that think differently. These are some of the things that I will try to find out through this I-Search.
III. At the beginning of my search, I had a really hard time finding secondary sources. First, I went to the school library. Since the school library has this computer program called BELS, there was no need to go to the other libraries. BELS is a program that lists all the books in Franklin Lakes, Wyckoff, and Oakland. It is a network that unites the two public libraries and the one in Indian Hills. I then went to an article search. I had no luck here either. When I went home, I went on America Online to try to find some articles or any secondary sources. I went to the article search and still found nothing. After a few days, I asked the school librarian to help me find some books. She guided me to a section that had books about social problems. Luckily, I found two books on families and parents.
These were two good books, but I still needed at least one more to fulfill my requirement. I went to the Special Services department and talked to a person there. She gladly offered help. She said that she would look through her stuff and try to find what she could on this subject. Then she told me to come back after school to pick up whatever she had. I returned after the school day ended and went back to the Special Services department. She was waiting there with two books and an article. Although I found that one of the books that I was given was not a real good help, the others were. My secondary sources were finished and now I had to move on to my primary sources. These were much easier because I did not need to search for anything. I interviewed two classmates during some free time I had in class, and put out a survey. These also helped a lot in giving me information I could use. Since I had all of my sources, I then proceeded with the notecards.