Positive motivation from any source—teachers, parents, friends, or books—helps an individual to overcome negative feelings about education. If the motivation occurs at the right time, it may prevent the formation of undesired behavior and promote effective learning.


Tiara, a fifth standard student, loves going to school. However, she never participates in classroom discussions for fear of being ridiculed if she is wrong. Her fear is an outcome of the giggles she once heard when her teacher corrected her pronunciation in class. Due to lack of classroom interaction, concepts remain unclear to her and her grades suffer. Because of regular low grades, Tiara is developing the feeling that she is “not smart enough.”

Read discussion of theories of motivation, self-worth, and affect. Respond to the following:

  • Explain how the fear of being ridiculed inhibits Tiara’s learning process.
  • What measures will you take to motivate Tiara and improve her self-worth?
  • Think of someone who motivated you to achieve a goal or to overcome an obstacle to a goal.
    • Describe the situation and how that person made a difference. You need not share any personal information.
    • Which theory of motivation might explain the result?
    • How could you use this method in the classroom?

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