Looking for some innovative ways to motivate and engage your student? Check out these 7 tips to help make learning fun!
1. Chunk learning and tasks. Completing homework assignments and studying for exams are essential tasks for any student. However, many students struggle with procrastination, inevitably leaving large assignments and study sessions until the last minute. To avoid stressful “all-nighters” and “cramming for exams” – encourage your student to break down their responsibilities into smaller chunks. This will not only prevent them from being overwhelmed but will also provide deeper retention of the material they are learning! For more great studying tips, click here.
2. Encourage active learning. Asking questions is perhaps the most effective way of learning, so encourage your student to “jump in” whenever they’d like – in other words, ask away! When students ask questions about an assignment, they are effectively providing themselves clarification on the concepts they are learning. Being active in the learning process improves engagement, understanding, and more!
3. Use real-world examples. Students often have difficulties seeing the relevance of the material they are learning. As we’ve discussed many times on our blog before, this commonly pops up in math subjects – “When am I ever going to use this?” Using real-world examples helps students to make connections to their existing knowledge. When a student begins to understand the applications of the concepts they are learning, they are more likely to become engaged and active learners.
4. Encourage metacognition. Encourage your student to self-reflect and to self-assess on a regular basis. This helps them become more self-aware and take ownership of their learning. Always encourage students to be honest with their own self-assessments, and these reflections are meant to help pinpoint the areas that may need additional focus.
5. Mix up your methods. As we’ve discussed on our blog before, students often have a learning style that they prefer – visual, auditory, and tactile. However, that doesn’t mean visual learners (for instance) won’t benefit from hands-on activities! Using a combination of learning styles is an excellent approach as it helps students to better retain material. Mixing up your methods can also help parents and tutors to determine which learning style a student prefers, so we recommend incorporating a mix of visuals, audio, hands-on activities, and games into your sessions and activities.
6. Celebrate successes. Every milestone is important, and every achievement is something to be proud of. Always encourage your students to give themselves credit for reaching their goals – no matter how small – while providing positive reinforcement along the way. This will help to build both their confidence and motivation to continue learning!
7. Be engaging. Vary your tone of voice, expressiveness, enthusiasm, and body language based on the situation at hand. For instance, during times of difficulty, many tutors incorporate humor to lighten the mood before getting back on track! Creating variation in your instruction is important for keeping students engaged and is especially valuable in online tutoring scenarios.