Studies have proven the power of intrinsic motivation: With it, kids are more likely to be creative, set goals, and much, much more. It makes sense that intrinsic motivation should also help children do better in the school subjects that interest them. If you like writing, you’ll be a better writer and if you like math, you’ll be better at math…right? This is part of the justification for programs that encourage kids to study the things they’re drawn to (and let me admit right now that I’m one of these parents — I want my 9- and 7-year-olds to explore their passions!).
We’re so certain that intrinsic motivation increases achievement that it almost seems like a waste of time to study it. But that’s what a team of researchers from Quebec did. Their study of 1,478 Canadian kids is now on early view at the journal Child Development.by