Getting students to talk, especially in the elementary classes isn’t much of a problem as most students always respond enthusiastically whenever a teacher asks a question. However, the traditional method of education supports a more teacher-directed approach towards teaching. Most of the activities in a traditional classroom are directed and managed by teachers.
What it means is that students get less time to speak their minds. And do things their way which is a key element of effective learning, retention and overall development of students.
Nowadays, the field of education on the whole, is shifting from traditional methods of imparting education towards novel and more effective teaching methods. Schools are increasingly adopting new technology in the form of smart classes, Learning management system and likewise.
Moreover, since the coronavirus pandemic, when schools and college campuses were shut down, locking millions of students and teachers across the entire nation out of the classroom, educational institutions and teachers across the globe have readily moved on to teach online.
Therefore, traditional teaching methods may soon become a thing of the past. Keeping the best interests of our students in mind, we must also shift towards a more student-centric approach towards teaching, providing them with the much-needed active learning environment which is integral for a high level of student learning outcome.
Here are a few tips and tricks which will help educators in getting their students to talk in class and shifting towards a more student-centric teaching approach that is conducive to more effective and efficient learning….
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Make use of Active Learning Strategies-
Using active learning strategies, a few of which are discuss further below in the article, is a great way of getting your students to communicate more freely in the class. Arranging students into groups working in close coordination with each other, discussing their learning from the class instead of taking notes or listening to lectures all the time will encourage the students to talk more in the class. Moreover, it also promotes student engagement in the class which is another key factor that governs both the quality and quantity of student learning.
Best Strategies to get students to talk in Class
The Jigsaw method is particularly helpful in promoting an active learning environment in the class. The teacher asks each student in the group to learn a part of the task. And discuss their learning with other group members. In this way, each student walks away with the complete knowledge of the task whilst engaging with their peers and helping them achieve the same objective.
Give students ample time to think-
Always give students the chance to gather their thoughts before answering any question. Make students feel comfortable while speaking their minds. You can even allow students to write down their thoughts before answering questions. Group brainstorming is also an effective method of helping your students in this regard. In this, students work in a think-pair-share. Wherein they discuss their thoughts and ideas with their peers before arriving at a conclusion. If letting it be silent for some time gets the students talking, then by all means do it.
Strategic Body Language-
Always appear engaged and interested when the students answer your questions. Think about this, when you are in front of your students, do you appear genuinely interested in what they have to say or are you looking away and distracted? A teacher’s body language is a key determinant of the students’ level of comfort and how long they talk. Ensure that you maintain eye contact while students speak and try to avoid folding arms. Try not to interrupt the students and nod your head when you agree with what they have to say.
Ask for students’ opinions-
Ask your students about the things they want to learn about the subject. Or what they think will help them comprehend the subject in a better manner. You can organize a student-led forum where students will feel free and open about discussing their thoughts and ideas. Ask the students to write questions and submit them for discussions in the forum.
Getting students to communicate more openly can be an uphill battle. However, with a little time, effort and by following the tips and tricks mentioned in this article, educators can certainly get their students to talk more and make learning more fun and engaging for them while enhancing their academic performance.
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