Harness the power of motivation to transform the learning experience!

When properly channeled, motivation propels learning forward. Yet teachers across all grade levels and disciplines struggle to recognize and cultivate this dynamic, social force in the classroom. This essential resource proves that all students are motivated to learn, and provides authentic tools to create and sustain a classroom community that is highly engaged. You'll discover: Reflection activities that promote student voice and self-efficacy as well as assess existing motivation levels; Case studies and best practices based on current motivation theory and research; Strategies to design meaningful learning tasks and build positive relationships with students and colleagues

This practical guide, aligned with Race to The Top Initiatives for teacher evaluation and Common Core Standards implementation, shows educators not only how to identify and harness motivation but also to sustain it over time. This is the one resource that will engage you in the thoughtful exploration of motivation and provide you with field-tested strategies that actively involving students, teachers and the whole school.

“The information and reflective exercises presented here allow a faculty to come together, tap into core beliefs, and create a culture of classroom motivation that energizes the entire school.”

—Melanie Mares Sainz, Academic Coach

Lowndes Middle School, Valdosta, GA

What Is Motivation to Learn?

What is motivation to learn?

As we begin our discussion of motivation, we encourage readers to consider their prior experiences and knowledge about motivation. To do this, we ask readers to think of examples of motivated and unmotivated behaviors and the teachers and classrooms that support those behaviors. Each of us can think of students who we might have considered motivated, and we may be able to identify times in our class when we believed we had really created a motivating environment.

Activity 1.1 Reflective Practice

Use a class list to identify which students you would consider motivated or unmotivated.

  • What guided your decisions?
  • What did students do to convey motivation or lack of motivation?
  • Why do you think students are or ...
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