It's the little things: Exploring the importance of commonplace events for early-career teachers' motivation

  • Kitching K
  • Morgan M
  • O'Leary M
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Abstract

This paper seeks to provide a rationale for further researching the everyday events that keep teachers motivated or that discourage them. We put forward the idea that routine Affect Triggering Incidents (ATIs) are an important area for researchers to investigate in terms of how they impact teacher motivation and resilience. Two groups of participants in separate consecutive studies kept weekly diaries of incidents that made them feel good or bad about themselves in their work as teachers (Study 1) and added weekly inventories of their commitment to teaching as well as measures of self-efficacy and self-esteem (Study 2). An analysis of the ATIs in these diaries revealed that student engagement and student achievement are major factors in incidents triggering regular positive feelings while students' behaviour and perceived difficulties around home influences are major factors in regular dissatisfaction. These everyday ATIs are important in the sense that they correlate significantly with measures of commitment to teaching, especially in the case of positive ATIs. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]; Copyright of Teachers & Teaching is the property of Routledge and its content may not be copied or emailed to multiple sites or posted to a listserv without the copyright holder's express written permission. However, users may print, download, or email articles for individual use. This abstract may be abridged. No warranty is given about the accuracy of the copy. Users should refer to the original published version of the material for the full abstract. (Copyright applies to all Abstracts.)

Author-supplied keywords

  • Affect
  • Commitment to teaching
  • Diary methods
  • Emotions
  • Motivation
  • Self-efficacy
  • Self-esteem

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Authors

  • Karl Kitching

  • Mark Morgan

  • Michael O'Leary

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