Mei Fung Lewina Lung
Hong Kong Baptist University
Catering for students with different abilities in the classroom is acknowledged to be teachers’ responsibility. Given the context that students with diverse learning needs have to attend lessons together with those who are normally developed in the same environment, to see if the two groups hold a similar or distinctive perspective on the learning motivation for acquiring English as a second language, this paper examines the data obtained from the questionnaires completed by the autistic schooling children and ordinary pupils from the same class in Primary 3 in a local school and then conducts a comparison. To investigate their causes of learning motivation thoroughly, this paper adopts Self-determination Theory and the ‘Five Orientations’ in the questionnaires. There are 18 reasons written in the form of brief statements. Each item is linked to either intrinsic or extrinsic motivation and associated with various orientations. The study finds that students with different abilities reveal individual differences in their learning motivation despite learning English in the identical environment, followed by a conclusion that extrinsic motivation and instrumental orientation best suit the majority of the participants regarding their willingness to acquire English as a second language. On the other hand, it is suggested that teachers make more effort to develop a new mixed teaching approach — ‘PCC’, (Positive teaching, Computer-assisted language teaching and Collaborative learning), which is based on intrinsic motivation, instrumental and integrative orientations, to cater for the learning needs of autistic pupils and to enhance the effectiveness of junior English language teaching in general.
About Mei Fung Lewina
Lung Mei Fung Lewina has been teaching English as a second language in Hong Kong since 2014. The bulk of her experience is with young learners aged 6 to 11. Currently she is obtaining a Master degree in Language Studies and will continue to pursue a PGDE in September 2020. Her research interests include teaching English as a second language for young learners, using computer-assisted technology as English teaching tools, and developing teaching approaches for children with special educational needs. Her teaching passion lies in catering to the needs of students and inspiring them to be self-motivated learners.