How to Create and Maintain High Learning Motivation in the Classroom
Having trouble getting students motivated? Maybe you just need to shake up your everyday routine!
Check out Top 10 Motivation Tips for the Classroom, and find ways to get students excited about learning such as strategies to keep students engaged, allow for creativity, change the daily routine, among many more ideas.
Keep Students Active and Engaged
When students are interacting and engaged, they won’t have to time to get bored. Choose students at random to answer questions, and make it understood that you value their input and ideas. Student interaction and sharing enhances instructional time and prepares students to function more effectively as a body of learners. We must recognize the importance of these dynamics and find ways to celebrate student intelligence.
Allow for Creativity and Variety
Assigning a piece of writing? Allow students to pick their own genre—such as reports, poems, creative writing stories, plays, or songs—when assigning a topic. When students can pick their favorite form of writing, they’ll stay intrinsically motivated.
Create a Class Newspaper
Inspire interest in current events by using a local paper as a model for reporting class events. Class projects in every subject area can be presented as news articles with headers, bylines, lead-ins, bodies, and summary paragraphs. Word games, weather, horoscopes, and after-school activities can be integrated with whatever content is being taught.
Get Out of the Classroom
Holding class or even just a short discussion in a new environment, whether a park, museum or the school library, is a great way to stoke student interest. When you return to your classroom, they may see a new approach to a problem or assignment.
Create a Competition
Participate in a competition. As long as there is appreciation for everyone’s best effort and not all attention is placed solely on the winner, competition can be a great way to create excitement.
Offer Differentiated Instruction
Knowing that you’ll have students of differing abilities in your classroom, craft your lessons for everyone—taking into consideration the different ability levels.
Provide Feedback Promptly, Frequently, and Efficiently
Students must be able to see a direct connection between any effort or completed task (such as homework) and a response from you, both verbal and written. Make sure you mention each student’s personal progress, rather than comparing his or her work with others in the class.
Provide Multiple Opportunities for Students to Set Goals
Students should have multiple opportunities to set their own academic goals. Invite them to establish obtainable goals for a lesson, a unit, or even for the whole year. Ask them what they would like to learn about a topic and what they think they must do to learn that material. Psychologists tell us that the goals we set for ourselves (as opposed to the goals others set for us) are intrinsically more motivational. We’re more inclined to pursue those goals and relish in the success that comes about when we achieve them.
Start the Day with Fun
Start the day off on a pleasant note: a funny video, a trivia question, or fun fact will help students see the entertaining side of learning.
Provide numerous opportunities for students to share their accomplishments with the class and the class to share their achievements with the larger school community. Use skits, plays, readers theater productions, library displays, bulletin boards, a class newspaper or newsletter, or other media to promote the efforts of the whole classroom.
Reviewed by Lily White