Publication Date

2017

Abstract

Promoting intrinsic motivation is often a central concern in teaching foreign languages to elementaryschool children. Self-determination theory posits that intrinsic motivation develops through the interac-tion of the person and the environment. The present study investigated how elementary school students’motivation develops over the course of a school year in Japanese public schools. Five-hundred and fifteenJapanese elementary school children were surveyed over the course of one school year. Self-reportedmotivation, perceptions of teacher support, need satisfaction, and engagement were measured at differ-ent times. External raters observed students’ engagement, while classroom teachers assessed the qualityof students’ motivation and learning. Structural equation modeling results indicated a positive, dynamicrelationship between motivation, perceptions of the learning environment, and engagement. Externalraters’ assessments showed significant positive correlations with students’ self-reported engagement.Findings indicate how the instruction offered in these Japanese elementary schools supported students’foreign language learning motivation.

School/Institute

Institute for Positive Psychology and Education

Document Type

Journal Article

Access Rights

ERA Access

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