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nrm3.jpgLast week we discussed my top 3 ways to engage students.  Today, I want to focus one more strategy: Relationships.
Most students won’t remember every math and reading lesson this year. I’m sorry to break the news to you. Students will remember how they felt about their teacher.  Yes, the relationship with their teacher is what matters. As you spend the final hours of the school year with your students, I hope that you will remember this and keep things in perspective.  YOU are what engages students! That relationship is what allows you to teach any type lessons.
Today, as my students walked into the library for their very last visit, I wanted them to know that I LIKED them and LOVED what I do.  So… I read the funniest picture book and used my best animated voices to my 5th grade students.  I captivated my audience—It was a success. 
Yes, there are many more strategies that you could incorporate and I have them listed below. But focus on your students, get to know them. It will surprise you how much more learning can be accomplished if students like their teacher and know that their teacher liked them.
Strategies to engage students include:
  • Assessing student’s prior knowledge
  • Direct Instruction
  • Explicit instruction (a clear explanation of the content)
  • Guided Practice (the student engages in practice with help from the teacher)
  • Play academic learning games
  • Utilize music
  • Teach and sing songs
  • Chart and practice chants
  • Post visuals for reference
  • Utilize standards based practice materials
  • Incorporate technology (I-Pad, desktops, laptops)
  • Give students and families access to educational websites (Big Universe is an excellent website for literacy)
  • Have students create presentation using Powerpoint, Pages or Keynote
  • Lets students practice with educations Apps
  • Educational videos
  • Project Based Learning
  • Online writing programs
  • Hands-on materials to increase engagement
  • Engage the multiple intelligences
  • Integration of art into the lessons
  • Online books
  • Integration of multiple subjects
  • Academic Posters for reference
  • Close Reading
  • Brainstorming and Discussion
  • Drawing and Art work
  • Graphic organizers, semantic maps and word webs
  • Humor
  • Student created movies (students can use i-movie or other)
  • Manipulatives, experiments, labs and models
  • Metaphors, analogies and similes
  • Mnemonic Devices
  • Storytelling
  • Visualization and guided imagery
  • Drama and acting out learning
  • Incorporate music, rhythm, rhyme and rap
  • Writing and Journals
  • Videos and documentaries
  • Read, study and write poetry
  • Other strategies as needed

We love to hear from our readers, how has building relationships helped with engagement in the classroom?

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