Teaching and imparting knowledge is a noble profession that comes with numerous techniques to achieve results. However, the main challenge is keeping students active and engaged throughout the entire learning process. When the students lose interest and focus, they are likely to miss out on important lessons.
To keep students hooked on the learning process, stakeholders are forced to come up with ingenious strategies, including the use of videos and complex activities. There are several approaches you can take to promote engagement and active learning among your students. You can use supplementary tools or rethink your teaching methods.
Below are a few ideas to consider to promote active learning in classes;
How to Promote Active Learning in Classes
1. Group Work and Collaboration
Group work and collaboration are good ways to give your students a break from their solo bookwork. It gives them a chance to share and learn from their mates as they listen to different perspectives. Collaboration helps them verbalize their ideas and receive positive criticism from their peers.
When creating groups, use your judgment and performance review to determine who works best with who. Taking time to make these groups will prevent ineffective partnerships and ensure the students are working in safe spaces where they can be more productive.
2. Leading Dynamic Discussions
A good discussion is one of the best ways to promote active learning and keep your students engaged. However, selecting and presenting a topic for discussion rarely occurs; this means you need to choose a topic beforehand and prepare adequately.
Organizing yourself helps keep the discussion focused within the laid down parameters. Well-structured discussions help students tackle multiple topics from different angles while increasing their interest and engagement with course content. The preparations are not limited to the instructor; you should share some of the topics with the students and allow them time to research and present properly sourced information.
3. Teaching with Technology
Technology has become a crucial part of everyone’s life, covering health, security, education, and even employment. You can leverage in-classroom technologies such as computers and tablets to explore a different approach to teaching. These gadgets allow you to experiment with real-time response systems and web-based tools such as blogs and forums.
You can as well take advantage of R for Data Science Essentials to promote engagement and active learning through auto-graded assessments and minimal texts. Technology provides students with a creative and innovative way to learn. However, you need to optimize these tools and align them with your learning objectives and course content for better results.
4. Engage with Your Students’ Interests
Taking an interest in what engages your students and integrating it into the learning process can help promote active learning. Use some of the popular aspects of their lives, such as social media and video gaming, to come up with a fun and interactive learning method.
This approach works best for a one-on-one approach where you deal with each student based on what excites them. Showing interest in what makes your students happy not only helps you come up with an effective teaching method but also enables you to build a good rapport and strong relationship with your students.
5. Encourage Presentations
Providing students with an opportunity to present their ideas and demonstrate learning in front of their classmates is a good way to promote engagement and active learning in class. This approach makes students more accountable and gives them a chance to learn from someone other than their tutor.
If your students find it difficult to speak before their peers, combine presentations with group assignments. Here are a few ideas to consider:
- Allow students to present group assignments in groups
- Let them share their work among smaller groups before choosing one piece to present
- Allow them to present their work while seated to prevent stage fright
- Let the groups pick a ”spokesperson”
The most important part of this approach is to make it a regular exercise. You should also rotate the groups to ensure equal growth. Encouraging presentations will help boost confidence in your students and promote an engaging space where students can air their opinions.
Conclusion to Promoting Active Learning
The key to promoting engagement and active learning in class is providing your students with an opportunity to present their ideas. You should also employ alternative teaching methods to understand your students better.
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Author: Raynne Morriss
Rayanne Morriss is currently working towards her BA from Oregon State University. She loves to write, read, travel, and paint. She enjoys finding new coffee shops with friends and expanding her cooking skills with her husband.