A Few More Ways to Rev Up Lessons and Hold Students' Attention
Jim Burke shares ideas for engaging activities across the curriculum.
- Analogies: Make comparisons. In social studies, compare daily life during the Civil War to daily life during World War II.
- Stories: To help students relate to a health class lesson, tell a story about a certain experience, focusing on the choices you had to make along the way.
- Numerical Representations: Have your students examine what happened during the Depression using graphic data to connect social studies and economics.
- Visual Explanations: In English, challenge your class to imagine that the characters in Othello are on a football team and then describe the role of each character.
- Dramatic Interpretations: Have students role-play a Supreme Court case based on a constitutional amendment you are studying in a government unit.
- Essential Questions: Ask the big questions. In biology, try "Why do living creatures have to die?"
- Hands-On or Manipulative Techniques: Have students design and build a city or structure using the shapes and concepts they have studied lately.
This article was adapted from The Teacher's Essential Guide Series: Effective Instruction by Jim Burke (© 2008, Scholastic).