Academic Motivation Welcome to Chapter 11! In this chapter we will be discussing teaching strategies for fostering motivation in an academic setting. Before this chapter can continue though, we must consider the three prerequisites.

1.We, as educators, must recognize that in order for students to be motivated they require a purpose. That purpose must be related to something the student is invested in; it doesn’t matter if it is fun, interesting, or even obvious to the teacher.

2.Doing something relevant to a student’s interest isn’t enough.The learning goal that we want the student to achieve must be somehow woven into the experience.The student interest cannot just be a carrot dangling in front of their faces.After all, we do want the students to be learning the task we presented to them; don’t forget we have our motivating purpose as well.

3.Students must be well prepared by the teacher.Properly framed schema, drawing on prior knowledge and experience, and clarity of the goal must be established for the student to be capable of finding success and maintaining motivation.Reinforcement of success, especially incrementally, will sustain motivation.

In Learning and Instruction: Theory into Practice by Margaret E. Gredler had many ideas, strategies and theories for bolstering motivation in academic settings.The following PowerPoint sums those points up well.

However, we feel that motivating your students isn’t this cut and dry.

Remembering the perquisites listed previously we would like to share some strategies to consider when building a learning task for students:

1.Use of rubrics – First, you have to be willing to let go of some of your control as a teacher.Be open to giving the students some choice and freedom.Allow the students to make their own decisions on the journey they will take.If you begin to be concerned that your students will be way off base, provide a rubric.A rubric is a great way to establish parameters without necessarily telling the students what or how to do something.This requires a little work on the teacher’s end of things (i.e. picking the truly important facets of the learning goals), but truthfully that is just one more way to show the student s what is most important that they learn from the task at hand. 2.Knowing that your limitations don’t have to be their limitations too -Example, just because we are inept with technology doesn’t mean we can’t let our students use it.This isn’t just about giving students more freedom and it isn’t just about letting them think outside of YOUR box; it is about validation.If you can not only say “Do as you wish” but you can also tell them “Wow! Great idea, I wouldn’t have thought of that”, it can be really powerful. 3.Differentiation – Teachers must be willing to differentiate their curriculum if they want students to find success.In particular, differentiation is most applicable in terms of motivation when considering the level of challenge a teacher presents in comparison to the readiness of the student. ZPD Graphic

**http://www.cogsci.rpi.edu/CSJarchive/Proceedings/2003/pdfs/321.pdf**
This graphic represents how boredom and confusion can be by-products of mismatching levels of readiness (student skill) and challenge.It is fairly common sense that in most cases, not all, that students will invariably lose motivation if they are experiencing either end of the spectrum, boredom or confusion.

Another theory that is comparable to this representation of ZPD is "Flow Theory". Introduced to us by Christopher Hlas and Mark Frie. Here is a graphic: Flow Theory Graphic

A student will find themselves in the "Flow Zone" when the amount of challenge a problem will present them with and the amount of skill they have to solve the problem has a direct variation relationship. Students will find themselves working to their highest potential if they are in the "flow" because it is a frame of mind that they are capable of achieving success. When a student is thinking in the "flow", they are motivated sufficiently to be participating in enough of a least restrictive environment that they are not distracted cognitively by anything outside of their environment.

Here are some examples of students choosing their own way to represent their project on the Pythagorean Spiral.

The person in the following video really sums up motivation in a classroom really well, enjoy!

Here is the lab write-up for a hands-on lab that was done in a Honors Trigonometry Course. The idea is...

Academic MotivationWelcome to Chapter 11! In this chapter we will be discussing teaching strategies for fostering motivation in an academic setting. Before this chapter can continue though, we must consider the three prerequisites.

1. We, as educators, must recognize that in order for students to be motivated they require a purpose. That purpose must be related to something the student is invested in; it doesn’t matter if it is fun, interesting, or even obvious to the teacher.

2. Doing something relevant to a student’s interest isn’t enough. The learning goal that we want the student to achieve must be somehow woven into the experience. The student interest cannot just be a carrot dangling in front of their faces. After all, we do want the students to be learning the task we presented to them; don’t forget we have our motivating purpose as well.

3. Students must be well prepared by the teacher. Properly framed schema, drawing on prior knowledge and experience, and clarity of the goal must be established for the student to be capable of finding success and maintaining motivation. Reinforcement of success, especially incrementally, will sustain motivation.

In

by Margaret E. Gredler had many ideas, strategies and theories for bolstering motivation in academic settings. The following PowerPoint sums those points up well.Learning and Instruction: Theory into PracticeHowever, we feel that motivating your students isn’t this cut and dry.

Remembering the perquisites listed previously we would like to share some strategies to consider when building a learning task for students:

1.First, you have to be willing to let go of some of your control as a teacher. Be open to giving the students some choice and freedom. Allow the students to make their own decisions on the journey they will take. If you begin to be concerned that your students will be way off base, provide a rubric. A rubric is a great way to establish parameters without necessarily telling the students what or how to do something. This requires a little work on the teacher’s end of things (i.e. picking the truly important facets of the learning goals), but truthfully that is just one more way to show the student s what is most important that they learn from the task at hand.Use of rubrics –2.Knowing that your limitations don’t have to be their limitations too -Example, just because we are inept with technology doesn’t mean we can’t let our students use it. This isn’t just about giving students more freedom and it isn’t just about letting them think outside ofYOURbox; it is about validation. If you can not only say “Do as you wish” but you can also tell them “Wow! Great idea, I wouldn’t have thought of that”, it can be really powerful.3.Differentiation– Teachers must be willing to differentiate their curriculum if they want students to find success. In particular, differentiation is most applicable in terms of motivation when considering the level of challenge a teacher presents in comparison to the readiness of the student.ZPD Graphic

**http://www.cogsci.rpi.edu/CSJarchive/Proceedings/2003/pdfs/321.pdf**

This graphic represents how boredom and confusion can be by-products of mismatching levels of readiness (student skill) and challenge. It is fairly common sense that in most cases, not all, that students will invariably lose motivation if they are experiencing either end of the spectrum, boredom or confusion.

Another theory that is comparable to this representation of ZPD is "Flow Theory". Introduced to us by Christopher Hlas and Mark Frie. Here is a graphic:

Flow Theory GraphicA student will find themselves in the "Flow Zone" when the amount of challenge a problem will present them with and the amount of skill they have to solve the problem has a direct variation relationship. Students will find themselves working to their highest potential if they are in the "flow" because it is a frame of mind that they are capable of achieving success. When a student is thinking in the "flow", they are motivated sufficiently to be participating in enough of a least restrictive environment that they are not distracted cognitively by anything outside of their environment.

Here are some examples of students choosing their own way to represent their project on the Pythagorean Spiral.

The person in the following video really sums up motivation in a classroom really well, enjoy!

Here is the lab write-up for a hands-on lab that was done in a Honors Trigonometry Course. The idea is...

Here is the video used in the Kickin' It Parametric Lab: