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Quality teachers: Essential for a Good Education

In general, as people we have the desire to want to become successful by achieving our goals. However, a person’s motivation in pursing their goal can be effected by their environment.  Such as, college students pursue an education to help them achieve their goals in becoming successful.  However, a teacher’s teaching approach can effect a student’s motivation in wanting to learn.

As a student I have experienced classroom environments where the teacher did not demonstrate enthusiasm towards the topic that was being taught, which did not encourage me to want to learn.  Therefore, it was very hard for me to remain focused in the class thus, my grades were negatively affected.  On the other hand, I have experienced a classroom environment where the teacher was enthusiastic about the topic, which encouraged me to want to learn.  Therefore, it was very easy for me to remain focus and retain the information being taught in the classroom.  The teacher’s enthusiasm caused me to enjoy what I was learning thus, my grades were positively affected.  In fact, I began sharing the information that I had learned with my family members.

As you can see, a teachers approach to teaching in a classroom can be motivating to a student’s ability to want to learn.  This can be accomplished through several techniques such as, hands on activities, students work on small group projects, discussions or debates on the topic, and relating everyday issues to the curriculum.

There are many strategies that can help teachers with motivating their students.  One effective way is letting students voice their opinions.  By allowing students to express themselves during class discussion can increase class participation and enhance their critical thinking skills.  Also, it can help establish a student’s sense of belonging which will help the students become comfortable with their peers and their environment.  Also, allowing students to make the decisions to certain actions can help increase the engagement of the class.  For example, allowing the students to choose their lab partners, due dates, assignments and grading scales.  However, the most effective way a teacher can motivate his or her students is relating the everyday issues to the curriculum that is being taught.  This technique creates meaning and adds value to the material which would improve their education and would motivate the student to want to learn.  Karin Kirk from Montana University states, “that connecting to the students outside lives, and adding everyday factors to the curriculum can cause students to produce interest and better focus.”

Having students more motivated to learn insure that more information will be retained due to the interest the student will develop.  According to Motivating Students to Learn, “retention levels are increased when the information presents interest to the learner.  It causes individuals to want to learn and embrace more information about the topic.  By relating everyday situations it gives students a chance to grasp the information and fully understand it which later improves test scores.  Also, it helps students understand the value and importance of the information being taught.”

If teachers would enhance their teaching strategies, which include motivating their students effectively, there would be a decrease in dropout rates.  Meaning, if students were engaged and enjoyed what they are learning, more students would excel in school, not fail.  However, when students are not enjoying or understanding what they are learning the students will become discouraged, thus more dropout rates.  According to Darling Hammond (author of The Flat World of Education) “the decrease motivation in classrooms will increase drop outs rates by 40%.”  Therefore, motivation in a classroom environment is very important.

In the world of education, many individuals will argue that teaching the basic information and practicing test taking skills is the best way to improve education.  However, motivating a student’s ability to want to learn is the best way to reach a student who wants, desires and goals are to succeed.

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