Being an elementary teacher can be as pleasing as it is challenging because you’re working with kids just beginning to unlock their mental potential. At the core of your duties, lies the requirement to cultivate creativity, inventiveness and problem-solving skills.
Introducing games and fun activities is one of the best ways to engage students and boost attention and learning. With that in mind, here are some excellent teaching ideas to ensure kids get the most out of spending time in the classroom with you.
1. Throw in a math game
Math can be an uninspiring subject for a number of students but. as with a lot of other things in the classroom, the “how” is just as important as the “what”. A maths game pack provides a fun way of tackling numbers in a casual, non-threating manner that is still productive. Some students don’t do too well under the pressures of a formal setting and such a break may kick start their learning.
2. The synonym exercise
Essay writing is an essential part of any academic program as it is a great way to build vocabulary and unlock individual personalities. It generally entails serving up a word for the classroom to think about and offer alternative words with the same meaning.
For older kids, you can have something more complex in place such as a board competition where teams earn points for every correct answer. The winning team could receive a reward of some kind appropriate for their age so as to inspire healthy learning competition.
3. Storytelling in different voices
It’s not just a case of reading one line after the other, it’s important that you make your story dramatic to keep young audiences hooked. Imploring different accents or voices to emphasize various characters does just that.
You can also demonstrate actions to enhance visualization which is an important part of learning for budding minds. Dressing up also helps with that.
4. Classroom songs
Your students may have outgrown preschool, but they certainly haven’t outgrown songs. Science indicates that you are more likely to remember what you hear through music than what you read or hear the normal way regardless of age.
If a particular topic or concept is proving particularly hard to comprehend for your students, consider fashioning a song about it. Aside from bettering cognitive function, song learning also eases agitation and anxiety. If you teach at a Christian school, there is a great selection of faith-based music available to teach religion and music at the same time.
5. Use students’ favorite items in word or puzzle games
You’ll need to do your homework at the start of each academic year to get to know your students better. You can do this by means of a survey where you find out what kinds of games, books, foods, or words they like. Then include those in shared reading and other classroom activities.
6. Incorporate writing
In an age where digital devices have taken over with smartphones replacing pencils, handwriting remains a vital skill that builds spelling and language prowess. Spelling skills have deteriorated thanks to informal social media platforms and forgiving search engines that offer up relevant results even for misspelled words. So don’t forget to throw in a couple of spelling and writing programs into your regular routine.
In the classroom, there are different types of learners. There’s the visual kind, i.e. those who excel with pictures and models, the kinesthetic learners who best grasp concepts via hands-on experiences, the auditory learners who learn more from what they hear and the read/write learners. Consequently, you should have a mix of various activities that appeal to the strong points of each group.
Related: Top sites for teacher lesson plans