Adults Motivational Direction (AMD)
Adults Motivational Direction
Children learn language because human have language. Without learning the language, the language will be learnt naturally. It is different when children learn second language or foreign language or lingua franca; children need motivation or answer of this question “why I learn this?” of course children do not have any idea to answer this question, meanwhile the answer of this question is the motivation for them. McDonald (1959:77) defines motivation as an energy change within the person characterized by affective arousal and anticipatory goal reactions. This definition emphasizes motivation as psychological (or neurological) phenomenon that affects a person, give the person a power to attain the goal or target. Furthermore, McDonald stated that there are internal (inner) and external (outer) components of motivation. The inner component is the change that takes place in the person, the state of dissatisfaction, or psychological tension. Meanwhile the outer or external component is what the person wants, the goal towards which his behavior is directed (McDonald, 1959:79).
Motivation cannot be observed directly, the following example will show how motivation works:
“Jonathan (20 years old) is trying to gain control the material his lecture gave. He was failed in the last semester and he wants to be success (inner component) in this time in order to get ‘A’ grade (outer component)”
“Michael (5 years old) is trying to reach candy (outer component) on the table because he knows candy is sweet and he wants to taste (inner component) it”
By looking at the above example, learning motivation to attain a goal is easy to be determined by who has experience of it. However, to state motivation in learning second or foreign language is difficult or even impossible for young learner because they do not have (yet) experience of it; meanwhile motivation is one of the important items in learning process.
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Again, in this stage of difficulties, adults play the most important role. Adults will give what we call “motivational direction” where children are directed by adults to learn language by utilizing children favorite manner. Motivation is generated indirectly by adults because adults knower what the children have to do. Thus, adults are motivator and children just aware what they like. By considering Harmer (2002:82) note that while children who are 10 and 11 years old like games, puzzles and songs most, those who are 12 and 13 years old like activities built around dialogues, question-and-answer activities and matching exercises most. Other considerations such as Piaget’s Child Stages and Vygotsky’s Zone of proximal development (ZPD) should be though and implemented carefully by adults. Indirectly, children are directed to learn foreign or second language by utilizing their favorite manner as expression of their cognitive ability.
Motivational direction is a trick used by adults to teach children foreign language by utilizing children favorite manner. For children, the activity (under adults’ direction) is something they like and for adults it is a way to learn something. Motivation generated in children psyche is to win the game or to get pleasure in the game and indirect or implied goal is to know foreign language words, of course under adults’ direction and a lot of explanation.
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Chomsky, N. (1959). Review of Verbal Behavior by B.F. Skinner. Language, 35:1, 26–58.
Griffiths. 2008. Lessons from Good Language Learners. Cambridge
Harmer, J. 2002. The Practice of English Language Teaching. Pearson. Longman
McCloskey, 2002. Seven Instructional Principles for Teaching Young Learners of English. TESOL Symposium. San Diego
McDonald. F. J. 1959. Educational Psychology. Wadsworth Publishing, co., Inc
Moleong, Lexy. 2009. Metodologi Penelitian Kualitatif. Rosda Bandung.
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Piaget, J. (1970). The Science of Education and the Psychology of the Child. New York: Orion Press.
Vygotsky, L. (1962). Thought and Language. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.
Zainurrahman, 2008. Using Picture in Teaching Vocabulary. Unpublished Research Submitted to Fulfill EFL Methodology Assigment.
(This article was taken from Zainurrahman's Research on English for Young learners, 2009. Children Language Acquisition and Object Recognition. Education University of Indonesia (unpublished))
To get fulltext of the research, please send mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
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