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Copy of Copy of The TKT Course: Insights into Motivation
Transcript of Copy of Copy of The TKT Course: Insights into Motivation
By Nataliya Petkova -Radoycheva
What is it that motivates learners to learn English and how can teachers contribute to motivation?
what makes a good teacher? -
skills, attitude, knowledge...
determined by various desires
…‘motivation' is an abstract, hypothetical concept that we use to explain why people think and behave as they do’ - Zoltan Dornyei ......'Thus, ‘motivation' is best seen as a broad umbrella term that covers a variety of meanings.'
'Motivation is, without question, the most complex and challenging issue facing teachers today.' - Freeman
Beliefs, interests, and motivations are part of a discursive repertoire
that people in a variety of societal situations use to describe others or
use to explain their actions: teachers frequently plan tasks that they
believe to be motivating students to engage and therefore to learn.'
- Jonathon E. Larson
What motivating activities do you do in class?
Resources on motivation:
Dornyei, Z, "Motivational Strategies in the Language Classroom"; Cambridge University Press, 2001
Gardner, Robert. C. "Social Psychology and Second language Learning: The Role of Attitude and Motivation"; Arnold Publishing, 1986
Larson, Jonathon E. "Educational Psychology: Cognition and Learning, Individual Differences and Motivation, Nova Science Publishing, 2009
Motivating activities we like doing:
Telling jokes and funny stories
Personalize my teaching
I share personal experience with them – a story or a fact. It proves to engage them a great deal and I ask them to share one back.
Watch movies I know they like and I base activities on them.
How do we teach motivation and how do we motivate our students?
What are the characteristics of a motivated learner?
What about an unmotivated learner?
A motivated learner is one with willingness to learn based on some need, either inner or outer, might be economical, personal, etc. A learner that is motivated knows what he/she is learning for, has an aim, a purpose. He/she is focused, precise and efficient. Such learners tend to complete almost every assignment.
On the other hand, a non-motivated learner has no idea why he/she is doing it. They also do not see the point of learning and that do not allow them to focus. They do not work and do not take the process seriously. They also avoid completing assignments and they might genuinely sabotage the learning process. ' /N.P/
A well-motivated learner is a pleasure to teach. His/her hand shoots into the air during class discussions. He/she can’t wait to answer the teacher's question. Motivated learners prepare their homework carefully. In fact, he/she’ll cheerfully take on one challenge after another, handle setbacks, and keep moving forward, even if results aren’t perfect.
Unfortunately, unmotivated learners are growing up these days.
I think that all students are motivated in some way, but adults need to help motivate them.' /B.N/
'Motivated learner - reads widely; comes to class regularly; is actively involved in everything that goes on in the classroom; asks for additional feedback; is curious and asks questions; is exited when there is more than one answer possible; likes homework (or at least doesn't mind it); does not mumble and grumble about how difficult it is to learn a foreign language, but sets time aside to study and revise; puts in effort and energy and doesn't expect immediate results, but is patient enough to carry on learning
Unmotivated learner - none of the above' /I.M/
'Motivated students ask for additional information, explanation and creative homework - I always appreciate their results and express my believes in their abilities.
What about the unmotivated students - they are one third of my classes so I try to engage them and participate in the class activities. I don't pay attention to their reluctance to learn and I always differentiate the tasks during the lesson - For them I choose easier exercises to do and not have time to chat.' /V.R/
'...motivated learners are easy to recognize - they are active, ask questions, ask for advice and in general collaborate with peers and the teacher.
The unmotivated ones are more difficult to recognize, though. They might participate in class activities, complete tasks and write homeworks but still do not "put their heart" in it. But this probably depends on the kind of motivation their have - is it just passing the exams and acquiring the grade or really leaning the language?' /T.S/
'Motivated students are ones who have eager desire to improve their skills and knowledge, so they actively participate in all class work. As Iva has suggested, these students don't mind homework. Their positive attitude towards the subject is easily recognizable. They always ask questions if they don't understand something, and demand additional explanations.
Unmotivated students, on the other hand, are quite the opposite. Their lack of motivation can be recognized by the way they complete the activities in class - they might do their homework and answer the questions the teacher asks, but they don't want to learn more than what is necessary for them to receive excellent marks. They don't always listen to the teacher and seem quite bored when additional explanations are given.' /D.G/
'...the motivated learners are responsible, self-confident and have higher self-esteem....they're eager to improve and demonstrate positive attitude ...
About the unmotivated - aren't active, they could do well, but are not eager to participate, aren't interested and seem bored ... indifferent - they are more difficult to recognize! I think they don't have (or don't see) the purpose of doing whatever better.' /E.A/
“Tapping into motivation is crucial for language teachers because
we know that motivation is one of the key factors driving language learning success.” - Dörnyei, Ellis
Zoltán Dörnyei is a professor in Psycholinguistics in the University of Nottingham, Great Britain. Among his works are: "Attitudes, orientations and motivations in language learning" (2003), "Motivational strategies in the language classroom" (2001), "Teaching and Researching Motivation" (2001)
According to Dörnyei, there are six key motivational factors:
1. Teacher enthusiasm
2. Feeling of encouragement from the teacher
3. A sense that the teacher really believes in the student’s progress and success
4. Genuine involvement of the teacher, maintaining good class and group relationships
5. Supportive, safe and secure atmosphere
6. Valuing student ideas and participation, encouraging autonomy, giving students the chance to make the classroom space their own
How to provoke it?
Ken Wilson's 10 ways to make students DO something
1. Make them curious
“I have no special talents. I am only passionately curious.” - Albert Einstein
4. Devolve responsibility
2. Challenge them!
Learners quite often feel bored and need something to provoke their interest. A challenging game to freshen them up is an ideal option to bring their interest back in class such as:
Simon Says Secret code
Can you find what is different? Game
Guess the letter on your back!
Luke Meddings joined forces with Thornbury to create
a ‘Teaching Unplugged’ manifesto, its enshrined belief
that classroom sessions should be materials light,
conversation-driven and deal with emergent language.
6. Let students use their tech skills
Marc Prensky is an internationally acclaimed speaker, writer, consultant, and innovator in the field of education and learning.
He proclaims the use of Smart Phones in class by designing different tasks to provoke interest and at the same time carry out some meaningful operations
Look to incorporate a ‘Google Moment’ in every lesson; a very sound way of embedding IT skills and linking the classroom with the world beyond it.
8. Find out what they know and what they are good at.
10 Commandments for Motivating Learners
Tim Ward, a freelance teacher trainer based in Bulgaria, introduces us to 10 simple steps to help increase motivation among language learners.
‘Motivation’s one of those ideas like justice or world peace: we all know it’s a good thing but it’s not quite so clear how to get there.' - Tim Ward
1. Set a personal example with your own behavior
2. Develop a good relationship with the learners
3. Increase the learners’ linguistic self-confidence
4. Make the language classes interesting
5. Promote learner autonomy
6. Personalize the learning process
7. Increase the learners’ goal-orientedness
8. Familiarize learners with the target culture
9. Create a pleasant relaxed atmosphere in the classroom
10. Present the tasks properly
10. Turn your classroom into a spider’s web
9. Take a break
Give some control to your students
Let them carry out the activities more independently
Let them switch roles and you observe
Use more autonomous games once a while
For more information Ken Wilson’s book Drama and Improvisation or visit
7. Use your learners’ imagination
1. Make them curious
"I have no special talents. I am only passionately curious.
Ken Wilson is a teacher trainer and a prolific author of ELT materials, with about 25 titles to his name, including ten series of coursebooks.
For more than 25 years, Ken was a director and key member of the English Teaching Theatre, a theatre company which toured the world performing stage shows for learners of English. The company made more than 220 tours to more than 50 countries in Europe, Latin America, Africa and the Far East.
In the summer months, Ken occasionally gives drama courses in various countries.
With his wife Dede, a freelance teacher-trainer, Ken runs an international
course for teachers from many different countries called Drama Plus.
So far, teachers from 26 different countries have attended Drama Plus.
This is Michel Lotito
Born in 1950, in Grenoble
Eats indigestible items
Some of his meals include a Cessna aircraft, 15 shopping carts, 6 chandeliers,
18 bicycles, 400 meters of steel chain, 2 beds and many more…..
The photo documented his successful attempt to eat a bicycle,
a feat he accomplished in six days!!!
5. Teach unplugged (occasionally)
Scott Thornbury first outlines the concept of the Dogme teaching in 2001 stating that traditional teaching styles mean tutors all too often get in the way of their students’ progress. Learners themselves should have more of a voice within the classroom and a greater influence over the resources used.
3. Avoid the obvious
Wilson suggests that using celebrities such as famous sportsmen, singers, actors, etc, as information about those tends to get old by hours. Instead we can rely on:
Interesting and bizarre facts
Unique and inspiring life stories
A British theoretical physicist, cosmologist, and author.
He is now almost completely paralyzed and communicates through a speech generating device.
He has been awarded at least 14 medals for contributions to physics and astronomy.
Use it as a tool to navigate into their way of seeing things;
You have to let them engage into the process, do not provide them with each possible example thus depriving them of developing any kind of autonomous thinking;
We should not try to facilitate them endlessly as this, according to Wilson, might turn our class into spoon-feeding.
Do not underestimate your students – they might surprise you with their life experiences.
Students’ autobiographies is a valuable source of knowledge.
Use those to couch the learning process accordingly into contexts that are interesting to them.
Finding out what they are good at can be of great help and essential to the way you teach/tutor them.
“I am enough of an artist to draw freely upon my imagination.
Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited.
Imagination encircles the world.”