First MMSEL class. I was quite shocked actually. I never thought that this class will be this not-mathematics-but-more-pedagogy. Hey, this is GOOD! Even though the material was familiar enough, I still did not feel any boringness in the class. Here, we mainly discussed about what a motivation is and how to ‘use’ it in our future class.
My favorite activity of that day was when the students were asked to define our motivation to become a teacher. I straightly remember my role model, Oprah. She always inspires me to be a good teacher. She has become a great teacher through her show for the last 25 years. Even though I have my own intrinsic motivation in becoming a teacher, she is, I guess, my extrinsic motivation. Besides this activity, we were also being asked to tell what our other dream job was. I never doubt on this. For the very long time, I always want to be a public speaker or an artist. Why? I just love to be on the spot light. This is also another reason why I want to be a teacher. I want to have my own stage to do everything I want in giving my best to the world. Since I love sharing through speaking, I do believe that teacher is the best option for me.
When we started to talk about motivation theories, I felt a bit numb. “Please not again!” I remember that almost in every semester we always talk about this. Then I think again, a material that’s always being repeated must be a special one. I realized that to motivate our students to learn is very important because a teacher will never ever can force his/ her students to learn. We can ask them to read a book or do homework but it is them to decide “do I learn something?” The only thing a teacher can do is just motivating the students to learn so that they can improve their skills in various aspects. Then, I tried to reflect on my own experience. Did my teacher ever do this motivation stuff to me? Well, the fact was yes (even though most likely he did not aware of it). I remember when I was in middle school, I had a mathematics teacher named Pak A. He was the true follower of behaviorist theory, especially in case of giving reward and punishment (actually it is only punishment occurred). My teacher was very fierce. He used to use wood ruler to hit anyone who made mistakes, especially the boys. He also used rings with huge stones to strike lazy students. Because of him, almost all of the students were very diligent on mathematics. Nobody dares to make him angry with doing wrong in calculating mathematics problem. Yes, it improved students’ math achievement but it also removed an enjoyable learning environment out from mathematics class. Thinking of this made me wonder, if my teacher know about motivation theory, would he do the same? I do not know. The only thing I know is that someday I will be a better teacher than him, especially in matter of motivating my students. Amin