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  • Nick Esposito

Chapter 2 | Build Cultures of Purpose

Updated: Jan 11

Having a great class doesn't happen by accident and it isn't luck. There are 3 human needs that everyone must feel in order for them to feel fulfilled. When those 3 needs are present, both teachers and students are able to relax and truly enjoy their time in the classroom. At the height of the Cold War the Soviet Union hockey team was the most feared team in the world. But despite an unprecedented level of success the Soviet players were left feeling unfulfilled. With some help the Russian players were able to defect and find a home playing for the National Hockey League. The Detroit Redwings brought them all together to form what history would call the Russian Five. The NHL has never been the same again.



Self-Determination Theory suggests that people need three basic needs to be met in order to feel fulfilled. I have developed those three building blocks to the classroom and have called it the Pedagogy of Purpose.


  1. Everyone must feel competent

  2. Everyone must feel authentic

  3. Everyone must feel connected

This episode provides strategies to implement each of these needs into the classroom.

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