Being a teacher is a big responsibility, not just in terms of making students learn what they should, but also to retain their motivation and dedication all through the process. A motivational issue is something difficult to define, though I have seen many teachers recognizing unmotivated students as those having least interest in their study. Is this the right approach or are we overlooking something? Does after school student care help dealing with unmotivated students?
What defines “Unmotivated Student?
Personally, I have observed that an unmotivated student is actually highly motivated about the academic life, but he is also highly motivated to escape homework, assignments and learning tasks. Such student sometimes exerts even more efforts than many of his fellows, but into avoiding homework, assignments and learning challenges. I have found that most of such students’ test scores show their high potential, yet their classroom performance tells something else.
- Working with Unmotivated students brings two key challenges…
The first is to transform the thinking so they believe that if they exert effort, they can succeed in academic tasks and activities. The second challenge is to determine what motivates students i.e. to determine the courses, fields of study, situations and settings that they respond to and that could be utilized to foster their engagement.
- What makes the students unmotivated?
No student is unmotivated by birth. The external environment factors such as lack of career counseling, peer pressure, inappropriate teaching methods etc. coupled with internal factors like financial constraints, family problems and lack of confidence, contribute towards student’s demotivation.
I have observed that after school students have a higher chance to develop disinterest towards their career and academics since they have a lot of options around to get involved in. Therefore, after school student care becomes critically important if we want our children not to divert from the correct risth.
But How to Deal with Unmotivated Students?
- Make Them Independent
This is something I have always followed while dealing with such students. Most of my unmotivated students were demoralized souls, suffering from a range of problems, mainly financial crisis. The Pasir Ris Student Care programs don’t just allow children to study various specialized courses, but they are also taught about the ways to earn money being a student, to cover their expenses. This is the part of our after school student care strategy, which teaches them that they can also make money, even being a student.
- Know what they want
It’s sad to see that students have great potential for media skills are rather studying mathematics, or students having business acumen are enrolled in language courses. Parents’ pressure, peer pressure, society pressure are the reasons behind this mess. Career counseling is the most important step in after school student care process since it helps putting the young minds on their desired track, interest and passion. We should not expect students studying something other than he or she is passionate for, to show great performance.
- Interrupt the Failure Cycle
A teacher must change student’s perceptions by nurturing positive experiences. For instance, assign work or task that gives students the feeling of achievement, and that student is able to complete successfully. Structure the course in a relatively easier mode in the start, so that students get confident to move ahead. If a student is struggling with any task, pay attention to what he is doing and correct his errors without criticizing. Make students believe that mistakes and failures are the part of the academic life as well as personal life. Make students feel that after school student care is important for gaining proper guidance towards their career development.
Nurtureland brings a range of courses for after school students, making them learn what they want and nurturing their minds through effective research methods, content and teaching approaches.