Our class this week is very exciting! We did not only discuss about the topic: The Influence of Goal on Motivation to Learn, but also watch a very wonderful movie: I Not Stupid.

I will review a slight about our discussion before reviewing the movie. Ms Mima said that the reflection should not only about reviewing the lesson but also reflecting on our own experience. So, I will try to be more reflective.

There are FIVE types of GOAL:

1. Mastery Goals

“I study this because I want to understand this material.”
Have you ever think like this when you are studying? If your answer is YES then it means you have the “Mastery Goals” at that time. This is very good for students to have this kind of goal because it will lead them to be more motivated in learning. They will give our best effort learn so that they can understand it. It’s like learning for the sake of our own understanding. I can say this does not really often happen in me myself. Rarely I can free my mind to learn a material without worrying about the result on my exam. In school, I also had the list of my disliked-subject. No matter how hard I try to enjoy that subject, it feels not easy to give your all to something which is not really your passion. I wish my Sociology teacher had done something else besides lecturing me about those theories of Sociology as already written on the book. I did not enjoy that time so much and my goal when studying that subject was only to pass the final exam. Sorry teacher, so sorry to myself too.. 😦

2. Performance-approach Goals

Someone with this kind of goal is very focused on the result. They aim themselves to reach the highest achievement. This type of goal is not totally wrong. By having this goal, students will be putting their best to achieve the best achievement it can be. But sometimes, it also can be turn down not good. It’s when they think they can not “win” the game, they will be demotivated to learn. They tend to avoid challenging or “risky” task. As teacher, I think it is very important to understand and anticipate students’ goal in learning. This can help to guide them and motivate them to learn. Teacher should not let these students to become too “mark-orientated“. They should also enjoy their learning in the process.

3. Performance-avoidance Goals

“I don’t want people think that I am not smart, so it’s better for me to shut up.”
This is so funny. Honestly, I also had ever think that way. I didn’t say anything when the teacher asked whether there is something I don’t understand. I chose to stay silent because I didn’t feel safe to show my “weakness”. Sometimes, it’s just not that easy to admit something you hate. This issue is very sensitive. This can be happened else where. I hope when I become a teacher in the future, I can detect this on my students and provide them better condition so they can consult their problem with to me more freely.

4. Social Goals

“Makes friends is very important, I need to socialize with my group, I want them to accept me and relay on me.”
This social goal is good to have, students can be more motivated to work in group. But, we need to be careful. This also can mislead them to only enjoy the ‘socialize’ part without taking much care on their own learning. As teacher, guiding them is an important part so that students are really learning not just ‘socializing’.

5. Work-avoidance Goals

This type of goal is shown in students who do their assignment with as little effort as possible. It seems like they are ‘lazy’ to work harder. This kind of attitude is not good, they will just let their achievement goes ‘flat’ just like the effort they give. Teacher can help these students by giving more encouragement and also feedback on their work as often as possible. When these students involve in group work, they will do as little work as possible. Teacher should give clearer task to each member of the group in hope that they will contribute more in their group.

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We watched movie: I Not Stupid (2002)

This movie is very delightful. It’s about family, parenting, friendship, school, culture, stereotype, government, society and it’s all packaged in a very simple but powerful way. Almost all the scenes from this movie look familiar to our  experience here, although the setting of this movie is in Singapore. I reflect a lot while watching this movie.

There were 3 elementary students: Kok Pin, Boon Hock and Terry. All three of them stayed in EM3 class because of their bad academic achievement. They were stereotyped as ‘stupid’ or ‘hopeless’ students. Almost everyone around them thinks of them that way. Even the teacher and their own family also label them like that.

I tried to bring my previous knowledge about motivation, needs, beliefs, and goals in learning while watching this movie to understand what’s actually going on with these three kids.

Terry – he came from wealthy family. He never works hard in his life, even to put jam on his bread he has nany to do it. Typical mommy boy, always says YES whatever his mom said. He doesn’t have his own voice, his mom always decides for him. Having everything always serve in table, his achievement never goes high. Simply, because he never thinks he needs it.

Kok Phin – his mother and father are very busy working. His academic achievement also never good enough for his mother expectation. He gets corporal punishment everyday from his mother for that. But actually, he is very talented in drawing. Unfortunately, his talent never get appreciated. Instead, he is always forced to learn Math and English everyday.

Boon Hock – he is such a big brother in his family. He helps his mother runs the restaurant while studying and taking care of his little brother in the same time.

They start to change when problems come one by one in front of their faces.

Therry has to choose whether he should tell the truth to depend his friends or just stay away and pretend not to know anything like what his mom always tells him.

Kok Phin’s mother is diagnosed Leukemia. He wants to make his mother’s wish comes true, which is seeing him scores good in exam.

Boon Hock wants to prove that as his mother’s son, he can make his mother proud of him by doing well in school.

The next day, a new teacher come and over her hands to help these EM3 students. What will happen to them? Will they succeed achieving their goal?

This movie is a very good way for teacher to understand what these kind of students need and in what way teacher can help them. A highly recommended movie for teachers and also parents. 🙂

I had a very good time watching this movie. I hope we can do this kind of activity again in MMSEL class. 😀


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