Achievement Motivation in The Underachieving Child

This paper discusses underlying causes, social reasons and educational solutions to remedy the problem of the underachieving child.

It is apparent that children differ not only in their achievement levels and in their abilities to achieve but also in their desire to achieve. Achievement motivation, the need to succeed at what one undertakes, to accomplish something, and to avoid failure, apparently varies greatly even for children of pre-school and elementary school age. School-age children also differ markedly in their ability to do independent, creative work. They differ in their ability and motivations to seek information, to solve problems and to create new approaches. All of these differences provide a very challenging and, at times, puzzling picture for school teachers who wish to provide the optimum environment for each school-age child.