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【第六部分 实践指导】

第六部分 实践指导

 

Motivational Flooding Beyond First Grade

Since Bogner et al. (2002), the Pressley group has carried out comparable studies across the primary grades (Dolezal, Welsh, Pressley, & Vincent, 2003; Pressley et al., 2003) and in sixth-grade, middle school settings (Raphael, Pressley, & Welsh, 2004). Essentially, the results obtained at those levels are identical to the grade-1 outcomes. Teachers varied widely in whether they engaged students, with the most engaging teachers being the ones who motivationally flooded their classrooms. In the most engaging classrooms, the teacher was doing something every minute to motivate the class, small groups, or individuals. She or he used many motivational mechanisms to do so, ones making a great deal of sense based on the educational motivational research. In addition, engaging teachers did nothing with the potential to undermine student motivation. In contrast, less engaging teachers used far fewer positive motivational mechanisms and used them less often, relying much more on tactics that can turn students off (e.g., punishment).

In the past few years, the Pressley group has turned its attention to how whole schools that are very successful in promoting the achievement of at-risk populations accomplish what they accomplish, noting substantial attempts to motivate students in such schools (e.g., Pressley, Raphael, Gallagher, & DiBella, 2004). Their most recent investigation, conducted at Benchmark School, is especially relevant here (Pressley, Gaskins, Solic, & Collins, 2004). Students come to Benchmark after experiencing school failure for one or more years, typically failure to learn to read. Over one to nine years (average is four to seven years), students learn how to read, compose, and experience conceptually-focused math, social studies, and science instruction, with much of this content-area instruction consistent with the motivating CORI conception of teaching and learning considered earlier in this chapter. The most important finding here, however, is that in every class and across the school day, there is motivational saturation. Students are consistently encouraged to believe they can determine their own achievement through their efforts and by learning and using the strategies and content taught at the school. There is much praise of achievements, with praise informing the students about what they did right. Grades are downplayed with grading for improvement the norm. The students are given appropriately challenging tasks, ones just a bit beyond their current levels, matched to individual students. Cooperative learning occurs in every class. The teachers do all possible to teach interesting content in interesting ways and succeed in doing so, with many connections made across the curriculum. Discipline is intelligent and reflective, with the centerpiece being reflection on the effects of misbehavior on self and others. Finally, and very importantly, the teachers show great pedagogical care (Goldstein, 1999; Noddings, 1984), with teachers’ concerns for students apparent in every class. Benchmark teachers know their students very well, with this deep personal knowledge translating to great teaching commitment, real teacher determination to motivate high achievement and success in students (Worthy & Patterson, 2001). And, of course, both academic engagement and achievement is high at Benchmark, consistent with other educational settings that are perceived as pedagogically caring places, warm and supportive environments by students (e.g., Skinner, Welborn, & Connell, 1990; Skinner, Zimmer-Gembeck, & Connell, 1998; Wentzel, 1998).

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