Imperceptible Power of Motivation
As someone who has experienced both sides of the spectrum, teacher and learner, I have had the opportunity to see different sides of a back-and-forth history. I have heard, "My teacher was horrible!", as well as, "I have a horrible group of students this year!".
This post was written by our TEFL certification graduate Evan J. Please note that this blog post might not necessarily represent the beliefs or opinions of ITTT.
My Personal Experience
After years of seeing and listening, my experience has taught me that both the teacher and the student play equally significant roles in the outcome of learning. However, it is a single attribute of the teacher that frequently changes that outcome for the better. Through leadership, engagement and classroom management, the ability to motivate your students to learn is one of the most important factors of a positive and successful educational experience.
It is no secret that the teacher has a responsibility to lead by example. Arriving on time, staying consistent and accepting your faults are a few leadership skills that can directly impact the motivation of a student. Using the example of speaking incorrectly as a teacher and a student acknowledging this, I believe this is a great opportunity to show your students that we are all in fact learners. Being able to make fun of yourself at this moment can build rapport and motivation in the class. Students will worry less about their mistakes and feel more motivated to correct themselves.
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Why Teachers Need to Love Their Job
I have had several teachers that seemed as though they wished they were somewhere else. Every class was incredibly boring and monotonous. I never wanted to be there and, naturally, was not learning. I was not motivated and believe that most of my peers were not motivated as well. This was my motivation to become a teacher. In subjects like math, the consensus is that it is difficult to motivate your students every day. However, it does not take much in my opinion. A bit of positivity and a smile can go a huge distance when it comes to motivation. This creates an atmosphere that is comfortable and fun. Once motivated, I have seen my students succeed and prosper.
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Similarly, classroom management plays an important role in the motivation of your class and the teacher. If a teacher seems out of control, the students will lack respect or not have a positive learning experience. On the other side, a teacher who is out of control will start to lose interest to be a teacher. In my opinion, this is a slippery slope that impacts the motivation in the classroom to its fullest extent. Without classroom management, there can be minimal motivation from the teacher and student. This will directly impact the learning experience.
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In sum, motivation in the classroom is a two-sided coin. Both students and teachers need to be motivated to achieve a positive learning experience. As someone who has experience both student and teacher, I have seen what it's like to be motivated and unmotivated. The result of the latter is rarely positive. My greatest goal as a teacher is to promote motivation in every single lesson. I believe this to be the single-most-important factor to a successful educational experience.
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