Teachers face students from all walks of life day in and day out. They are time-honored to deliver important knowledge to different students with equally different temperaments. One of greatest challenges of teachers is how to effectively impart knowledge to students that appear reluctant to engage the learning process. This is especially challenging, if reluctant learners have also been identified to have learning challenges or are displaying difficulties in utter defiance.
As teachers, it is your mandate to find ways to support them effectively and prepare them to not just survive, but thrive. To gear you up for this challenge, the following tips can be of help:
Try to identify the “reluctant learners” in your classroom. Observe your classroom carefully and take note how kids interact with each other. You can walk through the hallways observing student interactions. Meet with the school’s guidance counselor to ensure that you get first-hand information on what behavior to look for. Meet with your students’ teachers from a previous year, who had success with reluctant learners to gain strategies and tips. Additionally, meet with your school’s learning specialists and/or instructional coaches to ensure that your teaching methods will be anchored to effective instructional practices.
Forge Connections and Show Concern.
As a teacher, make it part of your job to show support and concern for all students, especially those identified as reluctant learners. Extend a helping hand and show interest in their wellbeing. Engage them in activities that maximize their potential. Let them believe you by virtue of your actions and intentions. Every week, consider allotting a few minutes of your time to talk to reluctant learners with either learning or behavior challenges to engage and empower their learning potential.
Build Trust and Respect.
Relationships to be successful must be built upon trust and mutual respect. Build such with your students by not seeking out their perfections or pointing out their flaws. Reluctant learners are reluctant because of their insecurities and fears. The process may be painstakingly slow but learning the beauty of giving trust and respect will eventually earn you the same level of attention.
Be their advocate.
Your role should be not just a teacher, but an advocate. Let them know that you are one with them and not against them. The more you see teaching as a form of advocacy, the more your students will see the sincerity in your intentions.
In all these, it is also important to be consistent in your actions. Kids are the gentlest of people. Some of them just so happens to be embroiled in situations they have very little control over. Equip yourself not just with knowledge but also with the constancy and unwavering willpower to change lives for the better.
Do you want to become a teacher that transforms lives? The combined mentoring and training of Ayodele Harrison will help put things into perspective. Schedule an appointment now!