1. Place children at the centre of their Learning
Students should be given ample opportunity to communicate their ideas, views and feelings across the curriculum. Allow children plenty of time to review their own work and be able to reflect on how they can move forward in their learning. For example: Students can be asked to write down possible solutions to mistakes in their exercise books.
2. Create problem solvers!
Allow and guide students to explore every possible angle to a problem, encouraging children to think outside the box. Never underestimate children, clever questioning helps them find their own solutions and negates the need to ‘spoon feed’ answers. Ultimately, a teacher’s role is not to implant knowledge, but rather to give children the tools and know-how to grow into conscientious and critical thinkers.
3. Make learning REAL!
Place the child’s learning experience into their world. For a lesson to engage a learner, the student needs to deem the lesson relevant and worthy of their attention. Learning journey diagrams are an effective tool, as they not only serve as aide memoires, they also show children where they are heading, almost like a visual story. Give children ownership of their own learning, if it belongs to them, they will take more pride in their work.
4. Collaboration, Collaboration, Collaboration!
Classrooms can become mini societies! Group work should be an integral part of any Primary classroom. Encourage children to review each other’s work and allow for a lot of peer communication, as students can often scaffold each other’s learning and this helps increase the surface area of learning.
5. Engage, Excite, Explore!
Capture their imagination! After all, a young child’s imagination allows you to take them anywhere. Wherever possible, ask children to actively participate in lessons. Make learning visual, audible and kinaesthetic. Reach out to all their senses and children are more likely to follow you on a learning journey. There are no boundaries!
6. Ensure every child achieves success.
There should be a suitable activity to engage and stretch all learners in every lesson. Differentiated outcomes should be displayed in student friendly vocabulary to remind the children of the objective of their learning and challenge them to push on to greater heights.
7. Keep students on their toes!
Ensure learning doesn’t stagnate, by ensuring the correct tempo to lessons. Activities should be constantly developed and evolved and not overly repetitive. Non-verbal signals and timed challenges can input focus and pace into lessons.
8. Make young learners laugh!
Teachers should be approachable and be able to laugh at themselves too! Making learners laugh at appropriate times helps to form good relationships between teacher and learners and has a positive impact on learning.
9. Utilise mobile classroom technology
Young learners have grown up with the wonders of modern technology and the power of the internet. Use this to your advantage and incorporate laptops, tablets and interactive white board activities, in order to expand their learning outside of the classroom walls.
10. Know your students!
Assessment should not be considered as something final and summative only. Good teachers can capture where a student is in their learning at any given point in time within a lesson, adapting and evolving activities mid lesson and ensuring progress.
Article by: Piers Richards | Primary Lead Teacher at TLC Private School