Students have the responsibility to stay on task and pay attention to the activities at hand…..right? Do teachers have the right to expect this? Sure they do! Who is responsible to make the lesson engaging? The lesson needs to be relevant, up to date and engage students from multiple angles right? Students have the right to expect this? Sure they do! Teachers have the incredible power to inspire students to reach for their potential if they tap into their passions. As I observe learning activities over the course of the year, I am likely to see the same students in different learning environments. In some classes they are totally engaged, in other classes they are totally uninspired. Most students are very engaged if the learning activities are hands on and involve active learning opportunities which include:
- Group problem solving
- Interactive media rich projects
- Learning activities that take them beyond the school walls (either physically or via technology)
- Activities that require the student to perform a task physically with specific requirements based on the established curriculum of the class
- Project based learning where individuals within a group have specific differentiated tasks
There are more engaging activities than those listed…..but I think you get the general idea. The challenge for educators is to weave into those activities the standards which are assessed by the state test (PSAE). It is proven by research that students who are engaged in these activities retain their learning better than those who can simply recite or do well on assessment because of rote drills.