Extrinsic vs Intrinsic Motivation for Starfire Students

Lighting the fire for S.T.E.M. from within

Lighting the fire for S.T.E.M. from within

When students feel motivated to learn, they perform better academically, improve their classroom behaviour and gain a higher sense of self-esteem.  

Starfire teachers help their students find motivation to excel in critical thinking, problem-based learning and deep understanding of mathematical concepts. 

There are two basic ways to promote motivation in students:

Extrinsic Motivation:
A drive to engage in an activity because of a reward to engage in the activity or a punishment for not engaging.

Intrinsic Motivation:
An inner drive to engage in an activity for its own sake because it is interesting and satisfying in itself.

In extrinsic motivation, the primary motivator is external (i.e. you expect to get something for completing a certain task, or you want to avoid a consequence for not doing something). For example, a student studies for a test because they want to earn a good grade. Or they mind their behavior because they don’t want to lose their recess.

When children rely too much on external motivation, they learn to compare themselves to others and may give too much weight to other people’s opinions.  Extrinsic motivation can be a useful tool, especially when a student is trying something new and challenging.  

In intrinsic motivation students are pursuing the activity because they it  or see it as an opportunity to explore, learn, and achieve their potentials.

Intriguing research shows that when students have intrinsic motives for learning — when they engage not for external reward but because they find the activity itself interesting and gratifying — they become more likely to attach meaning to their work, explore new topics, and persist in the face of learning challenges.

Starfire teachers use research-based strategies for motivating students to learn. One example is below

Become a role model for student interest. Lessons are delivered with energy and enthusiasm.  Displays of Starfire teachers’ motivation and passion motivates our students. Starfire courses are personal. Teachers showing why they are interested in the material.  They talk about challenging STEM projects they have been a part of and problems they have tackled, from robotics competitions to working in design at Tesla.

Get in touch at info@starfireed.com to learn more about our approach to intrinsic motivation.