In every classroom, children will have their own strengths and levels of engagement. Children will also have their own goals and aspirations, some differing with the things that they are interested in and some in areas where they find enjoyment. Goal setting can become a powerful motivator to those making them (Lunenburg, 2011). The goals of Curriculum for Excellence are to develop pupils that are Successful Learners, Confident Individuals, Responsible Citizens and Effective Contributors. Many children can find learning through the internet difficult, with limited skills in how to navigate its many features (Eynon & Geniets, 2014). In many Scottish classrooms, there are a number of children who have found this more apparent in recent times as much of their school life has taken place virtually.
Part of this development is to help children become more independent, be encouraged to lead their own learning and become more self-efficient. Developing greater self-efficiency can lead to an increase in effort and higher levels of resilience when challenges are present (Bandura, 1997; Zimmerman, 2000)
The aim of this enquiry was to determine the impact of setting goals on the virtual classroom. By allowing children to make decisions on their own goals, the aim was to discover whether this had an effect on the level of engagement online as well as the levels of motivation.