Learning With Lucie Archive 2006-2013

June 28, 2012

Autonomy, Mastery, and Purpose as Motivation

Filed under: Education — Learning with Lucie @ 8:57 pm
In 2008,  I found myself reflecting on the concept of motivation in learning as I took on the challenge of creating a 1 minute video to submit to Google as part of my GoogleTeachers Academy Application.  
I started to think back about those times in my classroom where students were immersed in the flow of learning -  times when I had to kick them out to attend their next class; times when they came in after school and on weekends to finish projects;  times when they asked to take classroom tools home so they could keep working on their projects. What did those times have in common?
In his book, Drive, Dan Pink  identifies Autonomy,  Mastery, and Purpose as the keys to motivation.   Reflecting back on the project based learning environment I had designed in my classroom, I’d say that Pink’s research is spot on. 
According to Pink
  • People want to be self directed
  • People want to get better at stuff -  they seek the challenge of mastery (especially if it accompanies making a contribution)
  • People want to be parts of ‘teams’  or “organizations”  with a purpose.
As educators our challenge is to create learning environments that give our students the opportunity to latch on to a sense of purpose, so they can seek the mastery of skills  necessary to contribute to that purpose and give them the autonomy to contribute to that purpose in a way that honors their skills and passion.   This is not an easy tasks.  It takes a masterful educator who is purposeful in his/her instructional design to achieve this.  And there will be false starts; there will be recalibration; there will be projects that plainly don’t come together.  There is no easy recipe.  But one reoccurring element that I found in the most motivating learning designs was “authentic matters".  Thus was born the inspiration for my one minute video on motivation
With so many examples of students being motivated by authentic audience, the tricky part was editing it down to one minute.  I managed to squeeze in examples of students 

But there are so many more.  And today’s digital age culture provides us with so many tools and opportunities for authentic audience to be part of the learning opportunities we provide to our students.

Yet, despite the research and the increased availability of tools and opportunities that the digital age culture provides us to learn with an authentic audience, schools and organizations continue to design motivational schemes based on carrots and sticks.
People don’t want to be treated like a horse.  Get rid of carrots and sticks and bring on autonomy, mastery, and purpose as you design a learning environment that yields high performance in your students. 
To learn more about Pink’s theories of motivation check out Vermont principal, Larry Fliegelman’s  blog post  ‘19 Top Ideas for Education in ‘Drive’    or RSA short video animation summarizing key concepts from Drive.
Think about experiences where you as a learner  or your students' motivation lead to amazing learning.  Share what this experience looked like.  What elements contributed to the motivation? When you think about these successful experiences, do you see MaslowHerzbergVroom,  Alfie Kohn, or Dan Pink’s theories at play? 



June 19, 2012

Looking forward to Google Summit

Filed under: Presentations — Learning with Lucie @ 7:52 pm


Looking forward to attending the Google Summit in Santa Clara where I will join a fantastic team of Google experts to offer a variety of sessions about all things Google.

I will present the following two sessions

Student First Approach to Google Apps    [Presentation Slides]

If you think the most compelling reasons to use Google Apps are free email solutions, shared calendars, and more efficient and collaborative workflow for staff — THINK AGAIN! This session will feature examples of students learning using Google tools such as using Google Spreadsheets to simulate banking to model the branches of government to presenting proposals for increasing streetlights to make their city safer using Google Maps. Learn how a rural Vermont school deployed Google Apps to its students first. Students took the lead; adults followed, and eventually the whole school district joined. Students first – is a tried and true method of going Google. Bring your own examples of student learning with Google Apps to share.


Beginners Guide to Apps Scripts    [Presentation Slides]

This session will introduce Google Apps Scripting to non-programmers. We will walk you through using some premade Google Apps Script such as Flubaroo (self grading quizes), (Mail Merge withing Google Apps) and (Sending custom emails based on spreadsheet data). Join us if you are new to using Google Apps Scripts or if you would like to share tips and tricks to help colleagues take the mystery our of using Google Apps Scripts.