Student Motivation Ideas: Motivational Methods That Get the Job Done


motivation ideas for students


Student Motivation Ideas:

Motivational Methods That Get the Job Done



ideas to motivate studentsHello from the Director of Youth Change Workshops. My name is Ruth Herman Wells, M.S. and I've spent my whole life inventing creative, unexpected motivational methods to motivate even the most resolutely unmotivated K-12 students. I'm the author of many books on motivational ideas for unmotivated students, and I train thousands of teachers and counselors annually on how to motivate unmotivated children and teens.

Here are some fresh, new motivational ideas that I know you're going to love once you try them in your classroom or school. They are designed to work when conventional motivational ideas fail, so if you've been frustrated by other methods, these strategies will get the job done right the first time.

Of course, it takes more than a couple strategies to turn around very unmotivated students, so be sure to use a wide assortment of my motivational ideas over a period of time to ensure that you get the level of improvement that you want. There are thousands of additional ideas to motivate unmotivated children and adolescents all through our huge website so make sure you see a good assortment of them.


ideas to help unmotivated studentsStudent Motivation Ideas That Work


Motivational Ideas

For Students Who Say

"I'll Never Need School Because

I'm Going to be a Mom"

If you have teens who think they're ready now to be a parent and no longer need school or education, try this great motivational idea.

Ask the potential teen parent to perform these chores that parents must do. For best results, use simulated or actual items that the student can use to demonstrate competence:

  • Figure out how to get an official copy of your child's birth certificate from your county or state records office so you can arrange health care and insurance.
  • Give your child 6 cc ibuprofen t.i.d. as per the doctor's written instructions.
  • Figure out how to get a social security number for your baby so she can qualify for health insurance or similar alternatives
  • Buy 2.5 liters of infant formula and give 6 oz every 180 minutes
  • To arrive at day care by 8 AM, how long will it take if you drive 25 mph to the day care site that is 15 miles away?
  • Buy enough diapers for your son for a week if he uses about 7.5 diapers during a typical day.


Motivational Ideas

For Students Who Claim

"I Won't Ever Need to Read"

Using the internet, have these students search for job applications for jobs they might be interested in. Have them determine how many of the applications require no reading. Next, ask these students if they might ever need to work.

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motivational ideas for students


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need33Motivational Ideas

For Students Who Believe

They Won't Need School Because

"I'm Going to be a Rap Star"

If you have students who believe that they are going to become wealthy rap stars (or rock stars, sports stars, models, actresses, etc.), challenge the student to follow through now on that claim. Provide a phone, long distance access and the internet so the student can contact music agents and recording companies.

When the student replies that he can't (or won't) follow through now, ask what will different later. Help the student realize that nothing will be different later, that becoming a rap star will be just as tough to accomplish now as later.

Also assist the student to notice how the skills learned in school can help– with tasks like finding a manager, reading a recording contract, etc. Have the student discover and list all the ways that school will help him in his quest to become a rap star. Have the student consider who has the best chance to become a star: the person with the most education and skills, or the person with the least education and skills.

Motivational Ideas

For Students Who Believe

"I'll Just Work in Fast Food"

Oh oh. The emergent trend throughout the United States– especially in tight economic times when there are abundant applicants for fast food work– is that you must be in school or have a diploma or GED. even to apply. Even worse, robots and computers are slated to fill many or most fast food jobs.


ideas to motivate teensMotivational Ideas

For Students Who Believe

"Then I'll Just Join the Military"

Sorry, but Uncle Sam doesn't want you without that high school the degree. The trend throughout North America especially during difficult economic times, is that you must have a diploma to even apply. Our Poster #225 shown at right, provides an on-going reminder. View Poster #225 enlarged, or order it here.


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About Ruth Herman Wells

Author/Trainer Ruth Herman Wells, M.S. is the director of Youth Change Professional Development Workshops. In 2011, Ruth was rated as a Top 10 U.S. K-12 educational and motivational speaker by Speakerwiki and Speakermix. She is the author of several book series, a columnist, adjunct professor for two universities, and a popular keynote speaker and workshop presenter. Ruth's dozens of books includes Temper and Tantrum Tamers and Turn On the Turned-Off Student.