I just finished reading Fires in the Mind by Kathleen Cushman. WOW!!! This is the best book about education I’ve read in a really long time. Kathleen Cushman really LISTENS to teenagers – and shares what they say about what motivates them and what it takes for them to invest the effort to get really good at something that interests them. Cushman uses the the latest research on cognition to explore with teens the forces that drive them to spend countless hours of deliberate practice to become really good at something.
Years ago I learned that the two most powerful factors in motivation are interest and choice – and I always thought that authentic, real world applications were essential also. In Fires in the Mind, Cushman explains motivation is a combination of two factors: what we value and what we expect we can do. And she elaborates on what deliberate practice includes that makes students work hard even when it is frustrating to accomplish a goal.
This would make a great book study. It’s a short read and will be worth your time! You should also visit their website.
Candace Lindsey is an online curriculum developer for eLearning.