I believe that engaging student’s motivation is crucial to successful learning. But getting to a new approach has not been easy in schools. There are at least three factors that influence the level of school performance of students: family environment, intelligence and prior knowledge (cognitive characteristics and affective characteristics), and motivation. Regarding the second factor, I want to make some observations about the importance of reading and vocabulary expansion as fundamental steps for learning.
Therefore, school activities need to aim at the following objectives: a) to deepen reading comprehension and textual production; b) encourage teamwork to learn the content; c) develop essential IT skills; and d) explore the creative use of new technologies to understand important concepts.
Let’s think about using narratives in the classroom. The narratives are present in different textual genres that young people have contact with on a daily basis and are presented in the most diverse forms: theoretical or informative texts, short stories, websites, films, software, photos, drawings, written or represented plays, etc. Stories or narratives are also found in the content of all subjects in the school curriculum and not only in language, literature, and history.
According to educators, it is one of the most powerful cognitive tools available to students to engage imaginatively with knowledge. Stories form our emotional understanding of their content. Stories are able to shape real-world content as well as fictional material. It is this modeling of real-world stories that promises maximum value for teaching.
It is never too much to emphasize, then, the importance of the “imaginative class” and think of the contents in the format of stories. Therefore, the content must be planned in such a way that it has some emotional significance, thinking of preparing it in a way that compromises the students’ imagination. Certainly, engaging students’ imaginations is crucial for successful learning.
Finally, the motivation for the work should occur mainly through the development of interpersonal intelligence, since, in the case of the project to create an electronic game or an animation, it must be developed and presented by small groups. Activities of this nature allow the teacher to check, among other things, whether students use different work styles when solving problems in different domains or ascertain whether there is a correlation between performances in different activities, or whether competence in an area can facilitate the performance in another.
The aim of teaching today is to enlarge, enrich, and make more rich and abundant the experience of children and young people. For doing this, I think you all agree it’s necessary to engage their minds and hearts in the world around them.