3.5 Focusing motivation to include all pupils in learning

If Kondi goes to another school and his new teacher is not an inclusive teacher, this will not serve any purpose. Indeed, if the teacher does not know how to respond to learner diversity by creating a positive classroom atmosphere and adopting a pupil-centred approach that facilitate learning and the integration of all learners, then Kondi will feel demotivated, and may increase the number of pupils who drop out of school.

Amotivation is what leads to the lack of motivation (Deci and Ryan, 2000). At this point, Kondi will not find any reason to stay in school or to persist in learning activities.

You must also be aware of the injustice that you could display against pupils when you do not have an inclusive attitude in your class. Your positive attitude towards all learners including those with disabilities and those with special educational needs should be obvious, as should your efforts to include all learners in the teaching–learning process. This can only be done if you take steps to create a positive climate in the classroom.

A positive climate is important for all pupils’ learning. This is aided not only by the mutual respect among pupils and between the pupils and you (the teacher), but also by the fact that you as a teacher have high expectations from all learners (in terms of behaviour, results, participation, etc.). You encourage them (TE4I, 2012) to meet your expectations by your warm and engaging attitude and you strive to make the class enjoyable both by its physical appearance and by the amicable atmosphere that stimulates learning.

Activity 15: Creating a positive atmosphere in your classroom

This activity will enable teachers to reflect on the impact of all pupils’ behaviours in fostering everybody’s inclusion.

  • On which of the points mentioned above have you already worked? Section 3 of Module 2 of ‘Life Skills (Primary) [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)] ’ available on the TESSA website and its associated resources provide examples of how colleagues proceeded to create a positive climate in the classroom.
  • In Case study 2 of Section 5 of Module 1of ‘Life Skills (Primary)’ available on the TESSA website, the teacher, Mr Adamptey,targeted activities for his pupils to do to create a positive atmosphere. Read this case study and see what other activities you could add in your own situation.
  • Complete Activity 2 in this section, Identifying your pupils’ personalities In the same section, read the third part, Celebrating success, (including Case study 3 and the key activity). Work with a colleague and consider how these activities help you promote a positive environment in the classroom. What else could you do to get to know your pupils better and help them to contribute to creating a positive classroom environment?

Activity 16: Twelve Attitudes of the inclusive teacher

This activity will allow teachers to reflect on their vision of the inclusive teacher.

  • Read the instructions of Activity 10
  • If you have not yet worked on this activity, follow the instructions and apply them to this chapter. If you have already started Activity 10, continue to annotate the list using what you have learned in this chapter.

3.4 Encouraging collaboration

4. Using language accessible to all