Maximising Classroom Participation

If you have ever taught a classroom full of students, you know that there is nothing worse than asking for the answer to a question only to be greeted by a wall of stony faced silence. Keeping students engaged with your lessons can be a difficult task, regardless of the age of the students. However, there are a few things you can do to maximise the level of participation in your classroom and make your lessons more fun.

Assess your own attitude
As a teacher, it is vital that you convey your own sense of excitement to the students before you start teaching them (you probably do this already but it is always a good point to bear in mind). Get to lessons early and show the students you are keen to start the subject, which will also boost their confidence and anticipation of the subject at hand. Occasionally you should also try to communicate in a conversational manner, rather than as an authoritarian, in order to help both them and you have fun learning.


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Use ‘hands on’ activities
Sitting still in a classroom is not going to help prevent your students from getting bored, so get them to be active while they learn. Use flash cards and props while you are teaching or have an interactive whiteboard at the front of the class that they can come up and write on. For certain lessons, you may even be able to take the students outside on a nice day to help them learn core concepts.

Utilise new technology
The modern world is changing at a rate of knots and students are in the best position to keep up with such changes. In fact, they are probably more well versed in using new technologies than you are, so utilise these skills to help you teach. Go on relevant social networks for your subjects or visit the websites of particular educational resources to help keep them interested in learning.

Introduce transition activities
Transition activities are essentially small breaks that occur in between lessons to help keep the child’s mind fresh and give it a rest before the next subject. Play music in the breaks between lessons or fun games that will also help them learn, such as hangman. Let them go outside to get some physical activity if necessary, as this will reinvigorate them before the next class.

Take school trips
Nothing is more exciting to a child than going on a school trip, if for no other reason than that they don’t have to be at school! Learning about history or science via books is one thing, but a fully absorbing hands on experience is the best way to keep them engaged in the class. Once you have visited the museum, you can spend a few lessons talking about what they learned there – participation is sure to be high if everyone has a good time.

These tips should give you the skills necessary to keep participation among your students high and keep your classroom a fun and engaging learning environment.

This post was written on behalf of OCVC.

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