What motivates people to LEARN!

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Photo source: ” Don’t Tell People What To DO; Tell Them Who They Are” http://under30ceo.com/dont-tell-people-what-to-do-tell-them-who-they-are/

 WHAT?

The teacher or facilitator may lecture and students or learners may appear to listen, yet actual learning my not be occurring, so what does motivate a person to learn something. What motivates people to learn is an area where educators and facilitators continue to struggle and question – “what really works” with all the suggested new and innovative ways to motivate people to learn. The motivation of learners is the key and goal of educators otherwise the task of educating would be pointless. The roll played in the facilitation of learning is vital; yet motivating the learners is the most important factor for real learning to take place, the learner must be actively engaged and motivated in the learning objective.

SO WHAT?

Learning is motivational for some and is easily found; while others struggle with motivation to learn. On a daily basis as an agricultural educator I seem to struggle with student motivation. The students I have the privilege to teach are what I call “worksheet trained” they are great with simple tasks, yet when ask to actually conceptualize a question or actually learn the objective they lack the skills and motivation. Many learning theories and proven strategies for facilitating instruction are found in searching the web, such as this site all about the motivation theory.  Although motivation for people to learn is an area where educators and facilitators continue to struggle even given the vast amounts of information, skills, and tactics available.

NOW WHAT?

I believe the key to motivating learners may be in setting goals, at all levels including personally and within a lesson; which can be seen in many instructional settings where the specific goal is incorporated at the beginning of a lesson usually called learning objectives. Motivating diverse learners with diverse needs, and diverse learning styles is the hardest area that educators encounter, and the objectives allows learners to at least know what to expect from the instruction.  Innovative ways to incorporate objectives into the lesson is one of best ways to allow the learner to become motivated. How the objective is communicated is the key to motivating the students it can be in the form of a question, activity, experience, anticipatory set, “I can” statements or numerous other ways to get the learners to actively engage.  I do not believe there is an easy answer for all situations and audiences/learners the skills should be adapted; younger people tend to want to be entertained, while older learners want relevance or to feel a need, some learners want to be challenged, and others want to know exactly what is expected and the list can continue. The learner could be motivated due to grades, pay, or other privileges. The motivation to complete work and or actually learn is different for all individuals; yet setting goals and objectives allows the facilitator to give learners something to look forward to,  leave them with the skills,or allow them to know where they need to be, and exactly what they are learning. Although The way the objectives are communicated still remains the key to motivation.

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