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Teaching Strategies to Increase Student Ownership

Janet Anthony

Teachers want their students to be engaged while in class. There’s no other inspiration for teachers than seeing their students excel in their respective chosen paths. But there are unavoidable moments when teachers encounter students who are not interested in the lesson. It is natural for teachers to worry about those students. It comes with the responsibility to exhaust all the possibilities of helping them. As teachers, you need to find teaching strategies to turn that uninterested kid into someone who is engaged enough to participate in class. Here are 6 example teaching strategies:

1. Conduct Counseling Teaching Strategies for All Your Students

Conducting a counseling program for students will help teachers have an understanding of their students’ consciousness and hardships. By doing this, teachers will know the following about their students:

  • Wealth of knowledge
  • Experience

This kind of program also helps a teacher guide their students about the following requirements in school, such as:

  • Scholarships
  • College entrance exams
  • Difficulties in assignments and examinations
  • Financial aid
  • Help guide students on the field they want to take as a career

This type of program can be done through one-on-one conversations or in a small group. Apart from the positive effects in terms of their academic career, conducting a counseling program will help students gain leadership and trust, while at the same time, teachers will be able to bond with students on a personal level.

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2. Instill the Idea of “Fear of Missing Out”

Fear of missing out, or FOMO as it is fondly called by millennials, is the desire to keep someone updated and connected with what others, including their peers, are doing. Here are some great ideas:

  • Make signage related to the upcoming lesson. It can be anything related to the topic, either a quote, a line from a book, or any reference. For it to be effective, do not acknowledge the signage you made, nor give any information regarding the sign.
  • Keep the students guessing. This is one way to have them engage in a topic by not giving them everything. For it to be effective, create clues to help them think.
  • Give credit to whoever deserves them. Extra credit, plus points, or recital points. In order for them to participate, ensure that most of the students are interested because people follow when they feel left behind.

What makes this great is the fact that aside from your students engaging, you, as the teacher, also create imaginative and creative ways -- which is a little requirement on your part.

3. Create Options for Your Students

People, especially students, enjoy the ability make a choice. It provides them with a sense of control, which allows them to do things based on their advantages. Apart from this, they can also use their advantage to work on their disadvantages.

For example, technology has played a vital role in today’s society. With social media and search tools such as Google, anything can be found on the Internet, with a wide choice of the best websites available. Instead of requiring them to visit the library, try to give them options such as one library book or two top sites with great essays and online journals.

Another simple example is highlighting their skills and talents. For example, if one of the works requires drawing, and the student asks if he or she could paint it instead, give him or her that option. It will help them release their hidden talents where they are comfortable. Apart from that, it helps other students try different things to excite them. As long as you keep them fun and engaging, giving your students options can be one of your best options.

4. Self-Assessment

This means evaluating oneself, including your actions, attitude, and progress. This might work to help students discover what they are lacking. Of course, the teacher will still have the final say, but it is also nice to let the students assess themselves. This can be done through the following:

  • A portfolio of all their exams, projects, and other requirements with their grades, so students can track their progress from day one up to the latest.
  • One good idea is to let students think of exam questions, so you, as the teacher, will know what they have learned through the course of your subject.
  • Teachers can also require their students make test guides written on index cards. This method will help students retain knowledge, by reading them repeatedly.

5. Try Interactive Learning

Teachers instinctively know whether their students are interested in the lesson or not. For example, when the teacher starts talking about lessons that do not interest their students, chances are these kids will just sit there and pretend to care. To avoid this, teachers can come up with interactive ways to turn what they do not like to something fun. Here are some examples:

  • Film viewing
  • Games
  • Moving exams
  • Powerpoint presentations
  • Visually appealing textbooks
  • Interactive notebooks
  • Journals

Visually appealing content has proven to be effective for students because studies show that it increases comprehension and retention.

6. Cooperative Learning

Cooperative learning is not a new idea to teachers and educators alike. However, what’s troubling about this is trying to figure out the assurance of the student’s learning. In some universities, transformative learning is a chance for students to work with each other. Some good points about transformative and cooperative learning give the chance to create teamwork and dividing workload. With group work, students will gain skills they can use the future, such as:

  • Teamwork
  • Optimizing everyone’s idea
  • Becoming a follower
  • Leadership
  • Healthy competition
  • Equal division of work
  • Giving maximum performance because they do not want to be the freeloader in a group

If teachers are concerned about fair grading, it is best to conduct self-assessment after the work.

These six examples are just some of the ways to increase student ownership in the classroom. As teachers, you only want to release your students to the best of their capabilities, in order for them to succeed in the corporate world or any field they want to pursue in the future either in the arts or sciences.

About the Author: Janet Anthony is a blogger from Kansas City who has been writing professionally for five years now. Her motto is, “What you do today can improve all your tomorrows.”