• How to keep your child motivated

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    Involve your child:


    You will not keep your students motivated if you do not involve them and let them take an active role in your classes. Long gone are the days when teachers talked for most of the lesson, with students taking a passive role. Classes need to be student-centered. The parent as partner should act as a coach and facilitator; to help, guide and direct the learning process.

    Give students the chance to shine


    It is also very important to give students the opportunity to be successful. Give them tasks where they can see the results of their efforts. That feeling of 'yeah, I did it!', that 'a-ha' feeling students get when they have done a difficult exercise, boosts their motivation.

    Make learning fun


    Make your classes memorable. Use games and competitions. Everybody loves competitions, and it gives students a nice opportunity to interact with each other, have fun and learn at the same time.

    Step away from the textbooks


    Bring in authentic material that your students can connect with, and that matches their needs and interests. Create your own activities and show them that you are also prepared to put in a lot of effort and time to help them succeed.

    Explain why you are doing things a certain way


    There is nothing more boring than a teacher telling students to open their book on page 22, and asking them to do exercise five. You need to explain why it is important for them to do this exercise, and what they are going to accomplish by doing it.

    Give very clear instructions


    When setting a task, be clear and allow students time to prepare first and ask you any questions. There is nothing more frustrating for them than not being able to perform well because they didn’t understand the task. This is very important to students. They need to have a very clear idea of what they are supposed to do.

    Set clear, attainable goals for every lesson


    You want your students to leave your class thinking it was worth their while. Start your lessons by writing down your lesson plan on the corner of the board, so that students know what they are going to learn. At the end of the class, point to the lesson plan and go over everything they have learned. It’s important for them to see where they are now, and where you are going to take them next.

    Vary the social dynamics and include movement


    Ask students to work in pairs or in groups. Get them out of their seats and moving. Ask them to change partners regularly. To keep your students’ attention, set a variety of engaging, meaningful activities, and create a friendly atmosphere where they feel they can talk freely and ask questions.

    Use different materials


    We all know that our students prefer looking at a screen than at a book, so use visuals, flashcards, infographics, quizzes, and make use of new technology. There are plenty of sites that offer online quizzes, games or videos. As teachers, it’s up to us to seek out new resources that may benefit our classes, and bringing technology into our lessons is a great way to motivate students. You cannot expect your students to be motivated if you spend half the class doing endless grammar and vocabulary exercises.

    Don’t over-correct


    Avoid over-correcting, especially when students are speaking in front of the class. Don’t undermine their confidence by interrupting every single time they make a mistake. Listen to them, and when they finish, thank them for their contribution and point out one or two important mistakes they might have made. You can then remind students that making mistakes is a natural part of learning and that everybody makes mistakes, even the teacher.



    Become a role model for student interest. Deliver your presentations with energy and enthusiasm.  As a display of your motivation, your passion motivates your students. Make the course personal, showing why you are interested in the material.
    Get to know your students. You will be able to better tailor your instruction to the students’ concerns and backgrounds, and your personal interest in them will inspire their personal loyalty to you. Display a strong interest in students’ learning and faith in their abilities.
    Use examples freely. Many students want to be shown why a concept or technique is useful before they want to study it further. Inform students about how your course prepares students for future opportunities.
    Use a variety of student-active teaching activities. These activities directly engage students in the material and give them opportunities to achieve a level of mastery.
    Teach by discovery.  Students find as satisfying as reasoning through a problem and discovering the underlying principle on their own.
    Cooperative learning activities are particularly effective as they also provide positive social pressure.
    Set realistic performance goals and help students achieve them by encouraging them to set their own reasonable goals. Design assignments that are appropriately challenging in view of the experience and aptitude of the class.
    Place appropriate emphasis on testing and grading. Tests should be a means of showing what students have mastered, not what they have not. Avoid grading on the curve and give everyone the opportunity to achieve the highest standard and grades.
    Be free with praise and constructive criticism. Negative comments should pertain to particular performances, not the performer. Offer nonjudgmental feedback on students’ work, stress opportunities to improve, look for ways to stimulate advancement, and avoid dividing students into sheep and goats.
    Give students as much control over their own education as possible. Let students choose paper and project topics that interest them. Assess them in a variety of ways (tests, papers, projects, presentations, etc.) to give students more control over how they show their understanding to you. Give students options for how these assignments are weighted.
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