Engagement refers to time spent working, intensity of concentration and effort, remaining on task and willingness to initiate action when given the opportunity. Students may resist subject areas, lesson types, teaching styles, peer groupings or cognitive demands. Low engagement may be temporary, transient or the student’s typical behaviour.
Display schedules and calendars on wall as well as pasted in student workbooks.
Make the lesson purpose relevant and ensure that the point of the activity is clear.
Design resources with white space, captions and short, punchy ‘pods’ of information.
Incorporate collaborative peer activities.
Use private, discrete cues with the student prior to important parts of the lesson.
Use high-impact visual aids and lively oral presentations to promote engagement.
Give homework and assignments in writing, not just verbally.
Write down key words on the board during periods of ‘lecture-style’ teaching.
Issue outlines prior to the start of a lesson so that students can see the ‘bigger picture’.
Provide opportunities for rigorous thinking and individual attention.
Frequently review past material.
Present the same concept in a number of ways.
Chart progress and maintain data.
Provide immediate feedback.
Be aware of secondary behaviours – anger, blame, denial, anxiety, hopelessness.
Reward effort over achievement.
Avoid criticism and negative attention.
Cultivate an environment of experimentation and risk taking with learning.
Encourage appropriate body posture.
Seat near good role model.
Allow peers to act as note-takers if student has missed work.
Peer groupings, allocate group roles.
Displayed unit outlines, objectives and schedules in the classroom?
Redesigned resources to be visually appealing and engaging?
Issued materials prior to the lesson for students to preview?
Established a reward system and method for students to self-monitor progress?
Considered preferential seating near teacher or peer role models?