Monday, October 28, 2013

Motivation and relevance . . .

I like this post from Will Richardson sharing an excerpt from a book by David Price, Open: How We’ll Work, Live and Learn in the Future.

No one can be ‘made’ to learn anything: for knowledge and understanding to stick, we have to have learner intent. The quality of one’s learning is directly related to our desire to learn. This is why progress made in learning socially, voluntarily, is invariably far greater than in the formal, compulsory context…We can’t motivate learners to learn: many teachers believe it’s their job to motivate their students. It’s not. They can only truly motivate themselves. But a great teacher helps learners see the relevance which drives self-motivation – why learning something will make a difference in their lives. [Emphasis mine.]

Do you agree with Price when he says that you can't motivate learners to learn, it's not the teachers job, and that great teachers help learners see the relevance which drives self-motivation?

1 comment:

Scott Mitchell said...

In my own learning, I have always found that I truly learn when I want to learn and not when I am forced to learn. I think you can motivate learners to learn. My students are motivated to learn because of my actions. My enthusiasm for the topic creates a motivation for them to want to do well. I also believe that using positive motivation, encouragement, enthusiasm, that feeling of never giving up, and making each student feel like an important part of what is going on in the classroom does motivate students to do well. Is it my job? I think so. My job is to the best I can everyday to get each kid in my class excited about learning, to make them feel confident in their abilities, to have them take pride in what they do accomplish, and to create an environment where they want to learn. Does it help to share that relevance?...of course. Is it important to have they see why something is important? Yes. If I am creating a drive in students to be self motivated then aren't I motivating learners to learn. I guess I struggle with the statement Mr. Richardson makes. Maybe I am reading it incorrectly but I think that what we do as teachers is motivate kids to want to learn.