Incentives are rewards that motivate a particular course of action.
They encourage people to behave in a particular way. The aim of writing this essay is to discuss issues in the Reading Incentive Program and analyze it from a goal orientation perspective, highlight the problems with this type of incentives program and provide ideas for it that does not undermine students’ motivation to read.
Issues in the Reading Incentive Program
In this case, a teacher was concerned about her students who never liked reading.
The issue was that some students were not exposed to reading outside school and this was because of the poor economy. Second, most of the students never liked reading during their free time at school. This was the reason why the teacher was concerned knowing that reading skills are important to the success of the students and the school in future.
An analysis of the case from a goal orientation perspective
The aim of the case of the Reading Incentive Program was to encourage students to read more. It was also a way of motivating them to read outside school and during their free time. The teacher developed the incentive program by placing a chart on the classroom wall to check the students’ progress, and each time one reads a book, he or she should report to the teacher then she will indicate on the chart by putting a star. She promised prizes to the student who read more books and this motivated the students to read more. Students were very excited on hearing about the program. It was conducted for one month and by the end of the program, every student was reading too much and was to receive prizes because of the hard work. Once the incentive program was dropped, she noticed very few students are reading during their free time.
Such motivation should be done frequently, so that it can be a habit to the students because if they are not monitored, they reduce the level of reading thus leading to failure.
Problems identified with this type of incentive program
Rewards destroy relationships in organizations, when people are forced to compete for rewards or recognition it destroys cooperation. Relationships at the work place deteriorate between supervisors and those they manage. This is because they work for rewards and this creates competition among the workers that later develops into hatred for each other (Kohn, 1993, para. 5). It is a form of punishment because some people work for money and they do not like the job. This is because they are promised rewards after and so even if one does not enjoy what he or she is doing, the prizes motivate them (Kohn, 1993, para. 5) but does not do the work willingly.
Incentives do not change the attitudes that influence our behaviors. Once the rewards are not provided, we go back to our old behaviors thus no lasting change in our attitudes and behavior. People are not committed to what they do because they lack endurance and motivators to perform their duties wholeheartedly and the organizations collapse due to lack of cooperation.
Ideas for an incentive program that does not undermine students’ motivation to read
Developing reward programs. Students should be given prizes to motivate those who do not like reading and it will improve their performance in class. For example a student, can be given scholarship when he or she performs well in the exams. They can be given novels as a reward to improve on their literature and grammar.
These rewards motivate the students to read more and it even becomes a hobby such that they read during their free time. Developing communicating and testing criteria in terms of grades provides competition among the students although they are not necessary in motivating them. Grading is used to determine the performance students in school and this helps them to identify where one belongs in terms of class performance. It encourages those that have performed poorly in their exams to put more effort next time since no one would like to be the last in class.
An academic subject that can be enhanced through technology
Geography is the study of the human and natural elements on earth. The study of the relationship between man and earth is enhanced by using the latest and most reliable geographic information available through technology. The opportunities by students and geographers to observe and present data from satellites and local observation represent processes that are adding value to a wide range of studies in the21st century.
Geography’s major contribution for 21st century can be viewed through the way it provides information about earth and its systems reflect the concerns of relationship between people and the environment, and responding to challenges of global changes in climate, population changes, land use and population changes ( 21st Century Skills Map, 2009, p. 8).
Description on how to use technology to support student understanding of geography
In order to access information effectively and efficiently, students should understand the legal issues surrounding the access and use of information. Use web-based access to print information, maps and graphics and they should provide accurate citations and references to the information they use from the electronic and print sources. Evaluate the information retrieved critically by comparing and contrasting it from the different sources you have.
This helps to assess the information effectively and efficiently for the problem at hand. Students should also evaluate with the use of satellite images to collect data of Earths surface. It is important to discuss the authenticity and reliability of data that you have obtained from the various sources, such as how the information is collected, stored used and its accuracy. Make sure that you read geography content based literature about a topic written by different authors, compare, and contrast the perspectives on the topic you are doing. Ensure that you access information on the internet regarding the environmental issues at stake. This will help understand the different positions and perspectives by different groups.
Identify the position of each group or person, then compare, and contrast the positions on the issues, considering the interest that a particular group may represent by researching the information available through web database sources. Work appropriately and productively with others. By doing this, you share ideas with other members on what they have researched and discuss how these issues affect the local and global community.
Use inter-personal and problem solving skills to influence and guide others towards a goal.
In conclusion, incentives influence people’s behavior such that they perform certain acts because there are rewards but if they are not given any reward they cease doing what they are assigned to do because they are not working for any reward.
(1993).Why Incentive Plans Cannot Work. Harvard Business Review.Retrieved 27 August, 2010, fromhttp://fiveandone.
wikispaces.com/file/view/why+incentive+plans+cannot+work.pdf 21st Century Skills Map. (2009).
Geography. Retrieved 27 August, 2010, fromhttp://www.p21.org/documents/21stcskillsmap_geog.pdf