One of the biggest challenges teachers in schools face today, is how to keep their students motivated in the classroom. Students are often easily distracted and with ever increasing classroom sizes teachers often find it hard to give as much time and attention to every individual student they would like. This article aims to help the teacher and give a few tips on how to keep students motivated.
1) Attitude - If you can keep a positive attitude and be excited this can have a very positive impact on the students. The more excited you are about the subject you are teaching, the more interested students are likely to be. Excitement and enthusiasm can be contagious.
2) Communication - How you communicate with students is directly linked to motivation. If you shout or make the student feel inferior if they have done something wrong, this can de-motivate the student. Try to focus on achievement which should help create mutual respect and motivate the students.
3) Opportunity For Reward - If some of your students are struggling in a particular area try to find ways which can allow them to succeed. It can be small steps to start with, but as their confidence builds they will start to feel as if they are succeeding. Try to think of rewards you can give to your students. Both individual and whole-class rewards can be a real motivator for the students and help keep them engaged.
4) Praise - Publicly praising students for their achievements can have a massive impact on their motivation and confidence. Ensure you make this a habit. You can be creative with this and make it fun. Whether you give the student a "gold star" or some form of certificate, ensure the student has deserved the praise. At the same time, try to ensure that you do not alienate other students. Only give praise where it is due and use this as a form of motivation to inspire other students to improve.
5) Teach Teamwork & Problem Solving - A great motivator is to challenge your students to work together to solve a particular problem. You can separate your class into different teams, where they will learn about teamwork, listening to others, bouncing ideas off one another and how solve the problem that has been set. This concept coupled with praise and reward can not only help them develop their relationships but at the same time promote something fun and engaging.
Keeping students motivated and engaged is not the easiest challenge in the world and does take some time and effort. However, the reward definitely out-weighs the extra work.
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