Engaging children in what you want them to learn is an initital step for their learning process to take place. However, this can be difficult if children exhibit signs of unwillingness and reluctance. This article explains three ways to help you motivate these kinds of pupils.
It can be hard to galvanise some children, especially when they seem disengaged. Here, educationalist Tracey Lawrence shares her tips:
Of course nobody can differentiate activities all the time, but certain strategies are easy to implement. You can facilitate the child’s thinking through a different style of questioning – for example, using open-ended questions for challenges. Try adapting your plans to include different techniques, as well as shorter steps for them to achieve. Crucially, this will allow them to see what they have achieved, in turn giving them that motivation to learn and try a similar task next time. You can build on this in subsequent lessons and refer back to this achievement, making it explicit to the child that they have the ability to succeed.
When we see reluctance we may be looking at disengagement. Could there be a reason for the child’s disengagement? I’m not telling you to go and have a chat with the child about whether everything is OK, but just to listen. Was your child a motivated learner in previous years but has suddenly disengaged? In this case, you need to ask what has changed. Don’t worry, it doesn’t point the finger at you as a teacher, but it is important to stop and check.
3. Play to their interests
If the child has been reluctant throughout their school life, then start your journey of finding out what will motivate that child. Think about their interests.