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Early childhood is a unique period. Children in the first few years of life seem to be oblivious to many experiences that could not be ignored by older individuals, and at the same time they sometimes appear to be sensitive to things that are beyond everyone else. Yet from birth on, children experience motivation.

In order to understand how children experience motivation, it is first necessary to define motivation. The term originates from the Latin, movere, which means “to move.” While textbook definitions of motivation differ, the term generally refers to the underlying tendencies that move individuals toward specific, goal-related actions. Motivation is an ongoing process that brings purpose to problem solving and serves as the basis for self-regulation. Thus, motivation plays a role in both ...

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