How can we motivate students with creative curriculum?Allow your students to really engage and take ownership over that content, by feeling like what they’re doing is attractive to see. Click To Tweet
Full transcript below video.
Hey guys it’s Rae and I am really excited that we are talking about creativity in the classroom to start engaging students. Now I am totally biased, I love this topic, especially when I’m using the Teach Further model. If you haven’t heard of the Teach Further model, The Grid Method and the Teach Better website has a free course and a full course to fully immerse you in how to design a Teach Further model. But if you haven’t heard about it before, of course, the Teach Further model engages the community to add really dynamic learning in your classroom. However, what other things can you do to add creativity in your classroom, to fully engage your students.
Now I want to give you a little tidbit, that you need to think about your students is five senses. Now the five senses are seeing, touching, smelling, hearing, and tasting.
Now those are five senses that every human has, but how do you really utilize those to then engage your students throughout their learning environment. So let’s focus on each one together.
In terms of seeing, there’s a lot of teachers out there that are fantastic at using color in classroom transformations, and use really eye-catching things. Those are so important in a creative classroom. Allow your students to really engage and take ownership over that content, by feeling like what they’re doing is attractive to see. Now this goes just into those worksheets that could formatted in a way that really are eye-catching. Maybe use bright colors throughout an activity. Or maybe do a classroom transformation whereas students walk in and they see different things that they’ve never seen before. But the use of side is really valuable, as your students come in, because that will be the first sense that you can connect with.
The next really easy sense that you can connect with, is auditory, hearing. How can your students learn through listening? And so that could be as simple as students learning through a video that they can pause, rewind, and fast-forward, but it can be as immersive as playing music, specific types of music, as they’re learning, or what sounds should they be hearing depending on what activity you’re doing, right that goes back to a classroom transformation. If they walk in and see a different environment, it should also sound different, so how can you bring in sound to not only teach your students, but relax them, maybe add a special mood, that’s a really great sense to connect with, and there are tons of places out there that you can get music recommendations for your classroom, depending on your age, so if you want to reach out to me, I’d be happy to connect you with somebody that is teaching a similar thing, and might have some sort of account of music that you can use.
Now we’ve done seeing, we’ve done hearing, now how about something that’s a little bit more tricky, and that is smelling. Teachers very frequently at least try to have classrooms that smell good, and that’s important, but how can you change the smell in your classroom to fit what your students are learning. You know, smelling is one of the most important and underrated senses that our students can use to really learn content. You know, It’s proven that if they’re working on something and they have a smell that they’re are associating it with, then that smell then actually reminds their brain of that information later on. It’s really interesting, especially for a test, that if they’re working on something that’s really important, and the whole room smells like pumpkin spice, and then during the test you have that same scent, there’s a direct correlation there. So finding ways to add different scents in your classroom is really important.
How can you do this? Candles, diffusers, stickers, right? Little things that can add just a little bit of scent. Obviously there’s rules and buildings depending on what you can have, but that’s a really important sense that you can try and immerse your students in some sort of environment to help those senses increase their learning success.
Alright, next, how about tasting. This is probably the hardest one, the one that I see used most infrequently is tasting because the ability to have your students taste something has the same effect as smelling, you want them to be able remember their learning and by having something that they are tasting they can make that connection. So this can be as simple as providing students mints, or jolly ranchers or having a food that they’re tasting.
Obviously this is a challenge in school, there’s allergies everywhere and we are always fighting that battle. However, it is as you consider your five senses, what can you do to really give your students that motivation, that creativity? It could be as simple as having s’mores when you’re sharing narrative stories, or it can be as awesome as giving everyone a mint as they get on the bus on a family road trip, but I want to make sure that you are thinking about that sense.
The last one, touching. How can we get our students to physically have things in their hands, like manipulatives to help them throughout their learning, and this is really something that you see used often with manipulatives, right, moving around things, but there’s other types of touching of things that students can manipulate besides just blocks. Right, other things could be as simple as printing out a number line and having them move a marble right back and forth down a number line.
It can be as awesome as playing a game that has them have physical items that they have to play the game with, right, we see that with battleship reviews, we see that teachers all over are playing headbands right now, right it’s a great game where you have cards with information that students are reviewing, those then get put on their head and held together with a headband. It’s fabulous, and then they work with a partner to guess the card that’s on their forehead, but that’s not often thought of as the touch feeling, how can they touch things? Well anything that’s touching their head, touching them in somehow is providing them with that sense, that sensory that were trying to get. This can be the same as doing a review with Twister, right, getting kids up and moving. That movement, that ability to touch things is really valuable.
I hope that you take one of these five senses and you really use that to provide your students with really creative learning opportunities. We have such incredible students that we are teaching and any way that we can add creativity to reach those students that are a little bit more challenging to reach can be really valuable. So consider your five senses.