A while back I wrote about re-engaging students. You can read about it here. I’m sure it has been helpful to a few teachers (hopefully more than a few). But no matter how well things go, eventually you’ll hit the dole-drums – you know, those times where kids begin to lose interest again.
Since we began the new semester at my current school, I had quite the change of classes. A few classes are great and the students are very active. Others, though, are quite reluctant to participate, or lose focus easily. I try a variety of strategies to get them to speak and be active, but I can’t force them (I don’t wanna force them either).
I had a student say she was getting bored with the class recently and it got me thinking.
How can I make this class fun again? How can I make this boring curriculum engaging for my students?
I found a few strategies on another blog by a principal at a school in Arizona. This educator gives some great tips!
- Make it personal – When students can take what they’re learning in the classroom, and match it up with events and people in their own lives, they’re more likely to stay engaged.
- Celebrate the little things – This may seem easy to forget, and it is, but it’s good to let students know when they’ve made an improvement, no matter how small. When students hear positive reinforcement from their teacher, it goes a long way.
- Lessen the work load – Too often we bog our kids down with homework assignments. Many students have homework in other class, too. We forget that kids get stressed out easily, and they also may have chores at home to do as well. If you think the assignments are not working, ask yourself, “What’s the purpose of these assignments?”, If they serve no purpose then they’re unnecessary.
- Give every student a chance to participate and succeed – Each student should get a chance to speak, write, etc. in class. While some students are more confident than others, those less-confident ones need the most encouragement. Try partner work and allow for more student talking time. Pair up strong and weak students, and encourage the stronger ones to help out when their partners struggle. Also celebrate each success, big and small.
- Try something different – When one strategy doesn’t seem to work, try different approach. It’s easy to get stuck in a rut and burn out. If you’re struggling to think of new teaching methods on your own, talk to another teacher for fresh ideas. Also, it’s a great idea to ask the students and get their input, because after all we’re doing this for them.
For more tips, you can go here.