Why is the PERGEL Program Applied to Children in Early Adolescence?

Many values, skills, and behavioral patterns that are required in the process of a child becoming a member of society emerge in early adolescence. For this reason, early adolescence is a very important period of development in human socialization. Early adolescence, despite this importance, has not stood out in psychology and developmental research for a very long time and it has been overshadowed particularly by the attention paid to infancy and early childhood. In order to eliminate this deficiency in the field and to support social and emotional development in early adolescence, the PERGEL intervention program was developed under the leadership of Prof. Dr. Çiğdem Kağıtçıbaşı. by Prof. Dr. Nazlı Baydar, by Prof. Dr. Zeynep Cemalcılar and by the Koç University Department of Psychology students.


What is the Purpose of the PERGEL Program?

PERGEL aims to support young adolescents' individual life skills such as self-worth, self-esteem, positivity and optimism, attribution, implicit personality and intelligence beliefs, and relational life skills such as autonomous-relational self, empathy and social competence, intergroup attitudes and conflict resolution approaches. By supporting these individual and relational skills, it aims to increase the well-being of children in early adolescence and to raise individuals who are psychologically healthy and positive and responsible towards both themselves and others.

What is the Impact of the Program?

The beginning of PERGEL was realized as a TÜBİTAK project between 2012 and 2015 with the "Positive Development in Early Adolescence: Understanding and Supporting Adolescent Development in Different Environments" research.  The application, evaluation and follow-up analyses of the study were carried out with 925 students in 9 primary schools with low and medium socioeconomic levels in Istanbul. As a result of the research, significant differences were observed between the children who participated in the PERGEL program and those who did not. While a general decline was observed in areas such as belief in change, social and emotional development and moral development in students who did not participate in the program, that this decrease could be prevented in students who participated in the program was also observed. It has been proven as a result of the research that the PERGEL program has positive effects on the beliefs, self-efficacy and social emotional development of early adolescents participating in the program,

The results of the PERGEL intervention program have been published as articles in scientific journals. You can reach the relevant article from the link.  

PEGEL Program Content

Session 1: Changeability

Session 2: Emotion Regulation I

Session 3: Emotion Regulation II

Session 4: Communication

Session 5: Automatic Thoughts and Comments

Session 6: Emotions and Empathic Thinking

Session 7: Caring for Relationships and Strengthening Relationships

Session 8: Respecting Differences

Session 9: Stress Coping Skills

Session 10: Reconciliation

Session 11: Peer Bullying

Session 12: Being Both Autonomous and Having Close Relationships

Session 13: True / False

Session 14: Success and the Future


PERGEL Program Applications


 PERGEL is applied to 5th and 6th grade students in groups of 15 – 20 people. PERGEL consists of 14 sessions lasting approximately 50 minutes each. Implementations of the program can take place during school or holiday periods by holding one or two meetings per week.

In 2021, pilot studies of the PERGEL Project were carried out at Ferhat Şenatalar Contemporary Activity Center and ÇYDD Şile Branch. In the spring semester of the 2021-2022 academic year, the implementations continued with 111 children in four branches.

This project, which has a solid institutional foundation and has proven to have positive effects, is aimed to reach 300 students in Istanbul and Izmir in the 2022-2023 academic year and to be implemented in all branches that want to participate in these cities. Its implementation in different cities in the following periods is being planned.