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Children's Intrinsic Motivation

Learn Tips to Help Build Emotional Intelligence

Children's intrinsic motivation is a key factor in being successful. Motivation and emotions go hand in hand. Developing a love of learning is so important. We can do this by asking children how they felt when they accomplished something or finished a piece of work. Once kids realize that their good feelings from doing something well, are better than the external stickers or praise they receive, then they will continue to motivate themselves to learn.

Encouraging kids to set goals and to break those down into manageable chunks is also useful. Teaching children the vocabulary of loving learning (learn, finish, future, goal, succeed, proud, target etc) will also help in this regard. If a child can verbalize why they are doing something and what emotions and feelings they have it will result in a more positive experience. 

Finally encouraging children to explore all six areas of their development at a young age (knowledge and understanding of the world, physical, social/emotional, creative, mathematical and literacy) will help them to find their own strengths.

Encouraging kids to explore and to try new things will encourage a love of learning. Adults should be careful of the language they use around young children to ensure self-esteem remains in tact. “Can you tell me about your picture?” Not “What is that? Is it a banana, or a moon?” 

Allowing children to create, play and explore their interests in a non-threatening manner will stimulate a love of learning for many years. 

Top Ten Way to Develop Children's Intrinsic Motivation

  1.  Give choices 
  2. Use open-ended questions to develop thinking skills 
  3. Ask children to self-assess their work 
  4. Initiate competition at times 
  5. Explain the purpose of doing things 
  6. Scaffold learning 
  7. Be consistent 
  8. Encourage individual goals 
  9. Learn the language of motivation 
  10. Celebrate success

Intrinsic Motivation

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