Strategies to Keep Students Motivated and Focused
As most of us know, students have a little focus length as against adults and even though, the thought about a particular goal is instilled in their minds, it becomes important that they should be kept motivated to move them towards their goal. Generally, the best learning materials, books and lessons cannot help in holding the motivation aspect in kids and they won’t gain self-motivation to put forth their utmost efforts. So, both intrinsic and extrinsic motivation becomes important and teachers can play an important role in encouraging children. Even though, it is true that it is much easier to say than done, regardless of whether you are an experienced or a new teacher, a lot of efforts and time should be spent in understanding about each student in such a way that he/she can be motivated accordingly. Here are some simple strategies that will help teachers to keep their students motivated and focused:
Giving a sense of control is essential
Experts are of the opinion that giving a sense of control to the kids in what actually happens in the classroom can be a wonderful strategy to keep children engaged. For instance, permitting them to select the type of assignment they do or the problems on which they will have to work will give them a sense of control and they will also gain the motivation to do more.
Creation of threat-free environment is essential:
It is important that students should be made to understand that there will be consequences for each and every action they take. Even though, this might feel to be a threat, it can bring about a positive reinforcement in their lives. When a supportive and safe environment is created for students by creating a belief in theirability, as against laying out the consequences of not doing things, they can stay motivated much more. In short, it is important to focus on what can be done and not on what cannot be done.
Using positive competition can be the great idea:
Generally, competition in the classroom is something healthier. It will in some cases motivate the children to try harder to stay ahead of the competition. However, the teacher should work towards fostering a friendly spirit of competition in the classroom. For instance, group games can be conducted to promote healthy competition among children.
Defining the objectives:
If kids are not given a clear picture about their objectives, it will be difficult for them to complete homework or even behave in the classroom well. So, it is the responsibility of the parents and teachers to make the kids aware of what are their objectives. It is important that students will have to be taught what is expected of them to make them stay focused. So, it is better to clearly lay out the objectives of that particular academic year at the beginning of the year itself.
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In addition, long-term goals are also to be instilled in their minds and should be encouraged to work towards the long-term goal as well. This will clear them out of confusion and they will be more focused on working towards their goals. For instance, if finding a government job is the long-term goal of a kid, he/she should be madeto know about government jobs in 2015. Not only in the current year, they should be updatedabout the government jobs prevailing in that year to keep them updated and motivated towards government jobs.
Changing the work environment:
It is true that a classroom is a wonderful place to learn, but sitting in the desk all through the day will remove the focus from the minds of kids. To renew the motivation, it is the best idea to change the class environment. For instance, some field trips can be organized, speakers can be brought in and they can also be taken to library for conducting research. The human brain loves novelty and a new setting can just help some students to stay focused.
Offering valid experienced can help:
Generally, different students respond to the lessons differently. For some of them practical training will be the best way of teaching, while others love reading books.So, to keep each and every student in the class to stay focused, it is important that the teacher will have to mix up different teaching approaches. This will help students with different preferences to get focused on things that impress them a lot. This strategy will help kids to pay attention and stay engaged.
Offering rewards can help
Each one of us likes to be rewarded and this is truer in the case of kids. Providing the chance to your students to earn rewards is an excellent motivational factor. Some strategies like pizza parties, sticker on paper can really motivate the children to work towards getting rewarded. The teacher can consider personalities of each kid to fix rewards accordingly to improve the motivational factor.The teachers and parents can also follow other strategies like encouraging self-reflection, praise, allowing children to work together, giving student responsibility and by harnessing interest in them.