To be attributed to Anand Prakash – Head of Academics & Co-founder Vedantu
There is a strong consensus that the learning outcomes of children depend on the quality of teaching. Today, education motivates learning experiences through new approaches like project-based learning, problem-based learning, inquiry or game-based learning, design thinking, and much more. The key focus is to engage students in meaningful ways that resolve their learning challenges, help them sharpen their analytical skills, and also achieve exceptional learning outcomes. But what comes to mind when we think about the secret ingredients that help teachers reach every individual in the classroom? Instructional approach or starting a dialogue with students or is it 3D graphics and demonstration? Well, all the technology-infused approaches work better with continuous methods of practice integrated in the learning process and some additional support from teachers to boost student confidence.
Let us look at some effective ways that can help teachers create a student-centered learning environment for them to thrive and achieve their fullest potential:
- Practice makes students perfect – The art of continuous practice is only what can remove the mystique out of the learning process or the exams. The more students practice, the more they have an advantage. For example, replicating the nuances of actual exams like conducting continuous practice tests. This will not only measure how much students know, but also reinforces learning and makes it more likely to retrieve the same information later. This data can also be used to drive instructions based on refined assessments by measuring the depth of student’s content knowledge and evolution. Solving practice tests helps them get an idea about paper patterns, questions styles, timings, strategies, schedule, and assess their overall preparedness.
Every student has a different style of learning. While differentiation of instruction is an excellent response to bridge learning gaps, integrating a strong sense of practice among all students will help them strengthen their ability to grasp concepts more effectively.
- Ice-breaker Q&As and one-on-one student-teacher interactions – Organizing post-class doubt-solving sessions instead of the traditional approach of asking questions is a great way to start a dialogue with students and engage with them. Discussing exam specific questions after each test is an effective method of solving doubts. It is important to build a rapport with students through one-on-one interactions where teachers can discuss individual strong and weak areas which will help them strategize their approach while learning certain topics or solving their next practice test or actual exam paper.
- An extra mile of support to build student’s morale – Efforts in reaching out to students go a long way in building their confidence and tackling their stress related to learning a new or tough concept or during exams. Different strategies like small talks on different topics, celebrating small wins, music sessions, conducting mentoring or counseling sessions are effective. Another additional support teachers can provide is by articulating well with the parents to build empathy and confidence towards their children.
All the teaching approaches have one thing in common which is they authentically aim to enhance student agency. Perhaps the greatest strategy of all, is to understand the students’ learning needs and empower them in their journey to promote great outcomes. Because only then students will learn more deeply, persist longer in their tasks, and enjoy the learning process.