It is undeniable that motivation has an important role to play in reading development and that teachers and classroom contexts can have a large impact on student motivation. According to Grabe (2009), there are four teaching implications regarding the role of motivation in second language (L2) reading. In the following sections, four teaching implications will be illustrated with personal interpretations. Based on that, all implications will be reordered followed by two relevant classroom activities.
Implications for instruction Grabe (2009) proposed four teaching implications regarding the role of motivation in L2 reading development. One is relatively theoretical and the others rely heavily on practice. They can be summarized as:
Motivation can be enhanced in the classroom and teachers can teach for motivation development.
Teachers need to gauge student abilities and ensure that students regularly experience success.
Teachers need to encourage some degree of student autonomy and choice in their instruction as part of engagement in learning.
Teachers need to support students in a range of collaborative activities that build student-student and student-teacher relationships.
Firstly, some teachers have the tendency to think that they do not have a major role in student motivation for reading. This view could not be further from the truth. Teachers need to raise awareness of the fact that motivation can be significantly affected and students need effective motivational support from teachers and the curriculum itself.
Secondly, instructions need to allow successful task outcomes by students on a consistent basis. Student’s self-confidence will be enhanced through positive feedback on tasks and learning progress from their teachers, also through regularly successful experience. In order to achieve that, teachers need to gauge student’s reading competence beforehand and match task difficulty with student abilities. Task difficulty should be set slightly ahead of the student’s current level. As a consequence, the tasks are neither too challenging nor too tedious for the students and they may obtain a sense of achievement through completing slightly challenging but manageable tasks. This implication highlights the opposite effect of success on motivation, that is, motivation may not only facilitate success, but also result from success. It is particularly significant for young learners. In addition to this, teachers should be well balanced between helping students to build up self-confidence and encouraging students to set realistic goals, because students may become demotivated if the goals they set are always unachievable.
Thirdly, teachers need to promote student autonomy. In order to encourage autonomous learning, for instance, teachers can try to gain some information about student’s personal reading interest, and based on that, they can introduce new books or reading materials to students to encourage extensive reading. Moreover, it is beneficial to encourage student autonomy by providing choices when set reading tasks. In other words, to get students involved in decision-making related to reading tasks and learning goals.
Lastly, teachers need to support student collaboration. Collaborative learning facilitates student motivation and learning efficiency. According to the concept of the zone of proximal development, which proposed by Vygotsky (1978), cooperative learning is an effective way of developing skills and strategies, meanwhile, providing appropriate assistance will give students a “boost” to achieve a particular task. This implication makes it quite crucial to create a pleasant environment and establish a good rapport between teachers and students, and peer students. Because it would be beneficial to promote students’ L2 development if they could regard classroom as a safe place for making mistakes, exposing learning weaknesses, and…