First of all, it is quite hard for me to write the reflection since I did not attend the class this week. I was sick and just went home after the morning course. The day after Monday, Pientha, one of the “part-time” teachers that week said that it is so pity that I cannot attend the class. I realized that I missed an enjoyable meeting.
I believe the class was so enjoyable so I think it is unfair for me to criticize and reflect the way my friends deliver the material when I was actually not involved L. So, would you mind to help me to check my understanding about the material? It will help me so much.
The topic for this week is Climate variables: creating a motivating environment. In this topic, there are four climate variables being introduced. The first one is order and safety. The next ones are success, challenge, and task comprehension. These four variables can be maintained to improve students’ motivation.
The first one is order and safety. By promoting a well-ordered and safe environment of classroom, teacher can improve students’ motivation. Imagine if the class is messy and in danger; or students are feeling stressed and threatened, they will not focus and be motivated.
Secondly, teacher may acknowledge students’ success as a way to appreciate their effort and thus make students motivated. Challenge may be a role of a whip to students. It can simulate students’ motivation but inappropriate challenge may demotivate students (if it is too high) or affect nothing (if it is too low).
The last is task comprehension. This variable is also important. To improve motivation, teacher should make sure that students know why the task is given and should be accomplished. Students will know that the task is essential for them and finish the task not merely because the teacher orders them to do so.
Another interesting matter in this week is TARGET model. This model is conceptualized by Carole Ames in 1992 to represent an effective motivation. Each letter represents a category that is closely related to climate variables above.
T – Task, as its name, is closely related to task comprehension. This category describes the way teacher motivates students through meaningful task (important and relevance for students). Besides, the task should be also challenging in order to stimulate students.
A – Authority (some other sources stated as Autonomy), is how the authority is shared, not only in the hand of teacher but also students. Students are given choices and teacher accommodates that. This action can be implemented by discussing class rules together, giving variation of task options, and so on. Through this, the climate will eventually ordered and safe.
R – Recognition is closely related to success. It supports how teacher recognizes students’ improvement in learning.
G – Grouping is related to all climate variables above. It fosters the scaffolding and feeling of comfort. This method is quite crucial since teacher should carefully choose how students grouped to motivate them, not conversely, make them reluctant to be in the group.
E – Evaluation is related to success as the way to asses students’ improvement.
T – Time is closely related to task comprehension. It is related to how teacher makes schedule of some tasks and adjust it to all students, who are considered to vary in pace of learning. Scheduling a very limited time for such a complicated task or a very long time for an easy task, may just decrease students’ motivation.
Actually all categories are related to each other and teacher should mix those categories “beautifully” in order to obtain highly motivated students. Let me cite one quotation to close this post,
Academic motivation has no single source, and teachers motivate students the best when they assume motivation is complex (Seifert, 2011).
Namirah F – 2009110039