3-Minute Motivators: More Than 100 Simple Ways to Reach, Teach, and Achieve More Than You Ever Imagined.


96 pages
Contains Index
ISBN 978-1-55138-215-9
DDC 371.102




Reviewed by Ginette Roberge


“This is a book about magic!” With this statement, the author sets the tone for a text rich with activities and insight into ways to enhance student motivation. Many teachers, in fact, struggle with inspiring their students to learn and to participate actively in the classroom. This book presents a wide variety of short, practical activities, called motivators, designed to either gain the students’ attention at the beginning of a lesson (anticipatory set) or to return students to task after they have become restless or disinterested. These motivators are categorized into activities that students can complete individually, in dyads, in small groups, or as a whole class. They are divided as follows: “Up and At ’Em,” “Words and Movements,” “Get Moving,” “Let’s Communicate,” “Act Don’t Speak,” and “Beyond the Three-Minute Mark.”


The strength in motivator activities seems to lie in their novelty. An activity that becomes too familiar could potentially lose its appeal and fail to engage students. Accordingly, the author has included 123 motivators in this comprehensive resource. Many curriculum tracks are represented: health and wellness, science, art, language arts, social studies, mathematics, physical education, and music. Cross-curricular connections can also be made, as many of the motivators presented can correspond to more than one subject. Some motivators also promote specific skill development such as fine motor control, word study, and sequencing skills. Most of the activities require minimal materials that are readily accessible in most schools.


On the other hand, some of the motivators involve competition between peers, which, while often rousing student participation, creates a classroom culture that counters collaboration. Caution is warranted in this case because it would be regrettable to develop student motivation to the detriment of the classroom climate. Nonetheless, the author’s creativity and passion for teaching is evident in the selection of thoughtful educational activities in the text. This book can serve as a practical tool to incorporate “magic” into all aspects of the learning environment.


Paterson, Kathy., “3-Minute Motivators: More Than 100 Simple Ways to Reach, Teach, and Achieve More Than You Ever Imagined.,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed May 21, 2024, https://cbra.library.utoronto.ca/items/show/28616.