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Monday, April 1, 2013

The Effects of Hindrance Stressors on Child Motivation


Here is an excerpt from Dr Pet's monthly column in Singapore's Child April 2013 issue...

We all know that the journey from poor to rich is not easy to navigate. Some people get distracted. Others are unwise in how they spend their resources. Everyone makes mistakes that can only be construed as stupid. Some people give up and make the best of the situation. They grab happiness where they may, by indulging in the thrill of shopping, perhaps? This, of course, makes them poorer. Others don’t give up. They keep at it. They persist in accumulating wealth.

It doesn’t matter how rich you start off. There are riches to rags stories of wastrels as much as there are rags to riches stories of humble people who die humble, but leave a fortune to a university.

The journey from loser in school to winner in school is also not easy to navigate. Some children get distracted. Others are unwise in how they spend their time. Every child makes mistakes that can only be described as stupid. Some children give up and make the best of the situation. They grab happiness where they may by indulging in the thrill of playing, perhaps? This, of course, makes them poorer. Others don’t give up. They keep at it. They persist in accumulating learning.

It doesn’t matter how smart the child is to begin with. So many intelligent children underperform in school. Others, more motivated but perhaps less intelligent, seem to do quite well. The question is, why do some children lose momentum in their quest for a valued outcome (such as good grades), and others do not? 

Perhaps research by Professor Jeffrey Lepine of Arizona State University could shed partial light on this. Professor Lepine examined the twin notions of Challenge and Hindrance Stressors.

For the rest of the article, please refer to Singapore's Child April 2013 issue. It hits the newstands today.


5 comments:

Theanne said...

I was an "underperformer"...my teachers called it "not living up to her potential"...over the years I've thought about why this was true. I have theories, perhaps one or more is correct :)

Petunia Lee said...

Theanne - You turned out fine though... perfectly talented in writing and painting. What more can one wish for?

My Sinfonia said...

Hey! Another article. Yes!

Petunia Lee said...

Sinfonia - Yup! I'm happy too!

Bluefairy said...

I was a truly "underperformer" during my lower secondary school. Even the teacher condemned me. However, after much self-reflection, I decided I do not want to be a loser in the arrogant school. Eventually, I did well for my "O" level..even got a bronze medal (though it is not gold but still something vs nothing).
I proceeded to NUS and graduated.
I guess the theory may be right. :)