Turning a New Page: Using Pop-up Books to Motivate Students with Learning Disabilities

  • Yakub Ta'ba' Universitas Pendidikan Muhammadiyah Sorong, Sorong, Indonesia
  • Supriyati Fatma Rabia Universitas Pendidikan Muhammadiyah Sorong, Sorong, Indonesia
  • Ahmad Yulianto Universitas Pendidikan Muhammadiyah Sorong, Sorong, Indonesia
Keywords: Learning disabilities, Learning motivation, Mentally impaired, Qualitative research, Special education


Admidst the struggle of reaching a good quality of teacher competence in special education schools (Sekolah Luar Biasa/SLB), the teaching staff still must face students with learning disabilities who exihibit low levels of motivation to learn. While such description is not true for every institution, preliminary study in SLB Negeri Sorong Regency, Southwest Papua Province, proved this to be a long-term case. This study aims to solve the situation through the practice of introducing pop-up books, which are visual learning tools that are new for the selected school. A secondary aim is to thoroughly describe the factors behind the low motivation to learn for the students. The design is qualitative descriptive research, using data from observations and interviews collected from September to November 2023 (three months). With informed consent, the participants included in this study are three students, three parents, and one teacher of Phase A of the SLB Negeri Sorong Regency. The results of the new teaching media and method show an unanimously enthusiastic response from the students, turning the students’ learning atmosphere in the classroom in a more positive way. The interview further revealed factors that have caused and reinforced the low learning motivation among the students, namely: (1) the repetitive and difficult-to-follow teaching instructions and, (2) discrimination against children with learning disabilities. While the former can be effectively solved with the use of pop-up books which characteristics are not only engaging but also easy-to-follow for the students, the latter remains to be the most glaring problem. This study is significant in revealing and improving the teaching quality of special needs children in one of the few special education schools that exists in Papua.


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Author Biographies

Yakub Ta'ba', Universitas Pendidikan Muhammadiyah Sorong, Sorong, Indonesia

Yakub Ta’ba’ is an active student leader and scholar. His involvement spans from participating in the Independent Campus Learning Activities (MBKM) program in 2023 to the Domestic Student Exchange in 2022, alongside serving as President of his department's Student Association. Yakub has a keen interest in educational research and writing.

Supriyati Fatma Rabia, Universitas Pendidikan Muhammadiyah Sorong, Sorong, Indonesia

Dr. Supriyati Fatma Rabia is a distinguished faculty member in the Primary School Teacher Education Program (PGSD) at Muhammadiyah University of Sorong (Unimuda). Her academic expertise encompasses a range of subjects, including advanced science instruction, the design and creation of science educational tools, and educational evaluation. In 2023, she played a pivotal role as a mentor for the Community Service Student Creativity Program (PKM-PM) across eight different fields, demonstrating her commitment to fostering student innovation and community engagement. Dr. Rabia's contributions to both her field and her students underscore her dedication to academic excellence and societal betterment.

Ahmad Yulianto, Universitas Pendidikan Muhammadiyah Sorong, Sorong, Indonesia

Dr. Ahmad Yulianto, M.Pd. earned his Bachelor's degree in Elementary School Teacher Education from the Faculty of Education at Universitas Negeri Makassar, followed by a Master's degree from Universitas Negeri Malang in Elementary Education in 2018. Dr. Yulianto has since joined the faculty at Muhammadiyah University of Sorong, where he contributes significantly to the academic community with a focus on primary education. His educational background and commitment to teaching embody a deep dedication to shaping the future of education.


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How to Cite
Ta’ba’, Y., Rabia, S. F., & Yulianto, A. (2024). Turning a New Page: Using Pop-up Books to Motivate Students with Learning Disabilities. Utamax : Journal of Ultimate Research and Trends in Education, 6(1), 33-43. https://doi.org/10.31849/utamax.v6i1.16825
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