This week, Section A is having a teaching experience in various schools in Jakarta and Bekasi. They are offered a chance to teach secondary school students by applying some methods. In MMSEL course we are asked to search for cases that are related to motivation topic occur in classroom. The first case happened in one school in Jakarta. Since our group still had no chance in observing the class, we found the case after interviewing a teacher.
One teacher in SMA X, Mr. A, was interviewed about his students’ performance in class. He said that his students were noisy and did not pay attention to Mr. A’s explanation. They often had chit chat while Mr. A was explaining and were not motivated to do the task. He said that his students rarely got score above SKM (minimum score of accomplishment) in test. Mr. A often held a remedial test but mostly it did not work. He assumed that students did not think that Mathematics is important.
Mr A’s students thought that Mathematics is unimportant lesson so that’s why they were not motivated in learning it. Teacher may increase students’ motivation by identifying other values behind students’ behavior. According to Eccles [Parsons] (1983, in Ormrod, 2008), besides the importance of the activity, there are three more values that affect students’ motivation, i.e. utility, interest, and cost.
Firstly, it’s utility value. Mr. A may ask what students’ dream are. He can say that whatever the job, Mathematics will be needed. This action also can be done by relating the material into students’ real life. To be honest, actually, we do not need to learn something that has nothing to do for our life, right?
Secondly, it’s interest value. Mr. A can try to design an interesting lesson. By knowing the fact that the students are noisy (in another words, need to “talk more”), he can design a presentation on the lesson or create a group discussion where students can expose their needs in talking meaningfully and they can present their work in front of class. Maybe students were noisy because teacher explained too much and did not give them a chance to express their thinking. They are not interested because they are not engaged in class, so they were less motivated. All of it resulting on the score got by students. The second case is an interesting case experienced by one member of this group. Although it was not happening during the teaching experience, our group thinks that this case is worth to share as a lesson.
In high school in Jakarta, there is a student named B who was not interested with math or science lesson. He usually got bad score, but he had good talent like he had melodious voice and could draw so well. His math teacher always said that “what would you do in the future if you always get bad score?” The teacher was angry with him in front of class it means that all students watched what happened to that student. If I were him I would be ashamed and didn’t want to get bad score and try to make good score. But he was different, he was naughtier, he didn’t do assignment and his score was worse than before.
I think it can reduce student motivation if the teacher angry with students in front of class. Ormrod (2008) said that students may avoid the subject itself if they found the learning environment is stressful. Things that will decrease students’ self worth should be steered clear.
The teacher’s emotional reactions to learner can also affect learners’ beliefs about their competence. Students learn and perform more successfully when they feel secure, happy, and excited about the subject matter (Boekaerts, 1993; Oatly & Nundy,1996). Students who feel stress will always think about their problems and fear. It affects their performance in focusing to the lesson. It happens to B, too. In B’s case, he needs someone (in this case is teacher) to make him pay attention to the lesson continuously. The teacher also should not make such atmosphere so that B and other students will feel secure. By doing this, B will feel that he was cared and feel more motivated to study.
You will get regret if you do not read and learn this third case, the last one from our group (hehee… :)). It’s also very interesting and it’s happened in one of our group member in the school experience.
Here, let say the teacher name is “Bunga”. Ms. Bunga taugh in XI IPA. In the first day meeting, one of our group members did observation inside of her class. She did whole learning activity monotone. From beginning till last activity in the meeting, students were instructed to answer the questions inside of their mathematics book. Then, after learning finished, one of our group members asked to student to prove whether the assumption right or not. In that interview, he said that actually he bored with that kind of learning activity (answering questions inside of mathematics book). He didn’t motivate to join in the learning process. He wanted to do something new. He also said, “Answering question shouldn’t do in the class meeting. It’s wasting time. It can be students’ homework. So, class meeting just discuss it if there any difficulties. Thus, the time will be effective.”
Like what we have shared in case 1, in this last case, student also bored with his learning. He didn’t motivate to join in his learning activities. He wanted to get something new when learning mathematics. Answering questions just like a very traditional way to promote mathematics inside of classroom. So, here, Ms. Bunga should be able to indicate her student behavior. Ms. Bunga should be more flexible to teach. When she know her students feel sleepy, do unexpected gesture or something that can be assume that they are not interested in learning activity, she have to change her way soon. According to Eccles [Parsons] (1983, in Ormrod, 2008), besides the importance of the activity, there are three more values that affect students’ motivation, i.e. utility, interest, and cost.
Here, I we would like to emphasize on “interest”. Not every activity can attract students to enjoy it. Teacher has to be more creative on it. Based on the case above, Ms. Bunga should arrange a new way to teach or new activity in the learning. Maybe, she can promote TGT to answering the questions or other methods. It will stimulate and engaged students to be active in the learning. It will be more joyful for students because they can share with their friends, etc.
Hammond, L. D, et al. n.d. Feelings Count: Emotions and Learning. Accessed from http://www.learner.org/courses/learningclassroom/support/05_emotions_learning.pdf, Oct 22, 2011
Ormrod, J. E. (2008). Educational psychology. (6th Ed.). New Jersey: Pearson.
Anugrah Meti – Namirah – Lega Problema