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It is so true that is difficult to motivate our adult education students, especially in the area of writing. Many only view writing through the lens of social media and texting. I often refer back to Maslov when I’m considering motivation within my students. In recent years, I have also focused on Maslov’s lower levels of hierarchy of needs, physiological and safety, in association with work I have done surrounding trauma informed care. This reminds me that our students, many of whom come to us with multiple barriers, must be able to meet these basic needs prior to becoming motivated academically. For some of our students who are “couch-surfers” with no permanent home, and/or who rely on public assistance for basic needs, our classrooms are the only environment where they can feel safe. With that said, we have many roles as adult educators.
However, there are some strategies that we can use to help motivate our students to write. Vicki Roberts in her research on how to motivate students to write identified five best practices themes: (student) high interests, personal connections, student choice, collaborative groups, and teacher modeling. Because our students have goals of getting jobs , keeping jobs , advancing in employment and/or attending post-secondary education and training, we can better motivate our students our students to write by focusing on their personal goals and connecting writing to their interests.
I wonder, other than writing resumes and cover letters, how are teachers incorporating employability skills into classroom writing activities?
Please share your thoughts and strategies!