The Motivated Student Book Discussion

I am excited to announce an online book study discussion group based on The Motivated Student: Unlocking the Enthusiasm for Learning.I hope you’ll join this professional learning community and encourage your colleagues to do the same.


The purpose is to discuss The Motivated Student and identify how to take positive advantage of the internal motivation students bring to school. If you’re satisfied with the number of students who work hard and regularly display the effort you want, then this group is not for you. On the other hand, if you wish more students worked harder and you’d like to develop strategies to engage and inspire more students, you’ll find this group professionally enriching.


Here’s how it will work: I’ll host a live online chat, following the schedule outlined below. The chat will give me an opportunity to introduce some key concepts from the chapters we are discussing and to initiate conversation. After each live chat, I’ll post some questions/topics for discussion on the “Inspiring Student Motivation” group wall on EDge so participants can share strategies, ask questions, and provide suggestions about how to foster internal motivation and academic success. Just go to to get to the “Inspiring Student Motivation” wall.


Here is our schedule:

April 15: live chat from 7:00-8:00 PM Eastern time.
Topic: Chapters 1,2,3 of The Motivated Student


April 22: live chat from 7:00-8:00 PM Eastern time.
Topic: Chapters 4,5,6 of The Motivated Student


May 6: live chat from 7:00-8:00 PM Eastern time.
Topic: Chapters 7,8,9 of The Motivated Student


May 13: live chat from 7:00-8:00 PM Eastern time.
Topic: Chapters 10,11 of The Motivated Student


May 20: live chat from 7:00-8:00 PM Eastern time.
Topic: Chapters 12,13,14,15 of The Motivated Student


To order The Motivated Student visit:


Get your copy today. I look forward to chatting with you on April 15!

Bob Sullo


  • Our final chat takes place on Thursday, May 20 at 7:00 PM, Eastern Time. We will be discussing chapters 12, 13, & 14 of The Motivated Student. Here are a few topics for discussion:

    1. Students often believe that they have no control over their feelings. Before reading The Motivated Student, were you aware that we nonconsciously choose much of what we feel through the actions we take? How can you use this information in working with your students? Do you believe this will help your students take feel a greater sense of control in their lives and help them give up the victim mentality that plagues so many?

    2. In Chapter 12, I discuss the importance of giving students ample time to process what you have taught to deepen their understanding. What steps have you taken to ensure that you move beyond a superficial approach and give students an opportunity to process, make meaning, and learn deeply?

    3. Finally, in Chapter 14 I discuss the importance of creating your professional identity. Have you “settled” for what others expect from you (an external orientation) or have you taken time to clarify exactly what you want from yourself as an educator? You have chosen the most noble profession. Are you teaching with a conscious purpose?

    I look forward to chatting with you tomorrow evening! 

    Bob_Sullo, 4 years ago | Flag

  • Our next live chat is on May 13 @ 7:00ET. Here are some things to think about before we get together. As always, I’m looking forward to a lively discussion.

    Too many students don’t put in maximum effort and too many students disrupt the learning of others. Why? I believe that most teachers create lessons without consciously considering the emotional needs of their students. In Ch. 10, “”Plan With the Students’ Needs in Mind,” I offer a procedure that allows teachers to create lessons that will lead to more n task behavior, increased achievement, and reduced disruption. I’m interested in hearing if you face more disruption later in the school day and if you create lissome with students’ emotional needs in mind. Is it our job to ensure lessons are “need-satisfying”? Do need-satisfying learning environments result in higher achievement?

    Ch. 11 is about teaching students to consciously self-evaluate. What kinds of things do you do to help your students self-evaluate and take greater responsibility for their learning? The effectiveness of self-evaluation s directly related to the quality of the information we have available to us. What steps do you take to ensure that your students have everything they need to self-evaluate in a way that promotes achievement? (Note: It’s not enough to simply say, “Check over your paper and see if it represents your best work before giving it to me.” They need high-quality information to make self-evaluation effective.”)

    Bob_Sullo, 4 years ago | Flag

  • Here are some things to think about and discuss when we get together for our next live chat (May 6 at 7:00 ET). Remember, you are encouraged to share your thoughts on the "Inspiring Student Motivation" wall even if you can't be part of the live chat.

    Ch 7: In chapter 7 ("Build Positive Relationships With Students”), I talk about meeting a teacher who had a lot of disciplinary problems, Liz Langois. When I asked Liz if she liked the students, she said, “I didn’t think that was part of the job.” Part of my answer to her was, “While I’m not saying a positive connection with your students will make you a great teacher, you can never hope to be a great teacher without the foundation of a strong relationship.”  While most of us would agree that a “positive relationship” with students is helpful, I’m most interested in two things:

    1. Do you think it’s essential (or merely “helpful”?)?

    2. How do you define a “positive relationship” with students? (Believe it or not, not everyone has the same definition!)

    Ch 8: In chapter 8, you are introduced to Trish Ortiz, a teacher who creates purposefully relevant lessons for her students. She says, “A lot of my colleagues think it’s a waste of time and coddling kids to create plans they can relate to.” She also says, “All the relevance I infuse into my classroom is done because I know it supports learning.” Do you agree with Trish that relevant lessons lead to increased academic achievement? What are some things you have done to create relevant lessons?

    Ch 9: In chapter 9, I say “If we provide students with an opportunity to achieve success and demonstrate competence when they show reasonable effort, virtually all students will become engaged, challenged learners.” I also say “The vast majority of students who underachieve lack the fundamental skills to be successful.” What strategies have you utilized to help students believe that they can achieve success when they put forth reasonable effort?

    I say, “When success is defined as improving your performance and demonstrating an increase in skills and competencies, every child has a chance to be successful.” What are your thoughts?

    I'm interested in what you'll have to say during our Thursday, May 6 chat.

    Bob_Sullo, 4 years ago | Flag
  • Just a reminder: No book chat tonight. Our next live chat is Thursday, May 6 @ 7:00 ET....bob

    Bob_Sullo, 4 years ago | Flag
  • OK. Now my level of frustration is WAY UP!  I am still not connected. I do not know what i am doing wrong.



    Marcella_Emberger, 4 years ago | Flag

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