The Art of Learning and Other Tutor Advice

How to keep a student focused?

Keeping students engaged is one of the number one tasks a teacher has to perform on a daily basis. Engaged students stay focused, perform better and get higher grades.

So how do we keep students engaged and focused throughout the school day, even when in subjects they don’t excel at?

While it is the student’s responsibility to be good pupils, teachers can do their part by taking a few extra steps to make lessons more interesting and the classroom experience more productive overall.

Here are a few of our favourite suggestions for capturing student attention and helping them focus in the classroom:

Be Spontaneous

The unexpected always draws attention, and a teacher doing spontaneous things – actions that show their humanity – is an important way to contact with students. It helps them understand the teacher better as a person, not just a role model or authority figure, and promotes a closer connection between them.

This also helps to engage the student in ways that gets them more interested in what the teacher is saying.

Change the scenery

From field trips to simply teaching class outside, moving students into a new environment can be a critical way to increase focus and engagement. Even changing up classroom  décor once a week can keep them on their toes.

Create a “self-running “ classroom

According to hot chalk , a “self-running” classroom ensures that students keep themselves and each other engaged , allowing the teacher more time to teach , rather than “administrate”.

When teacher establish expectation through routine , engaging activities and procedures , students will know what they need to do and when , leaving  little time to become distracted.

Implement time management

Teaching students better time management skills and having them put them to use will be beneficial for them as well, ensuring they learn the importance of getting their work done as efficiently as possible.

Make lessons interactive

One of the best ways to help students focus is to make the lessons they are taught more interactive. Turning ant assignment into a game, incorporating music, video and other activities that students can join in with, rather than simply sit and watch, will keep them focused.

Teach the importance of ownership

Teaching students that they own their work and actions will encourage them not only to do better work, but make every action they perform one they can be proud of.

The ownership spirit applies to all parts of life and by incorporating it early teachers can help instil the idea of owning every part of a process, not just the outcome.

Use goal setting

Have students set goals for projects and activities and help them create a strategy for achieving those goals. Ownership is centered on destination thinking model for their lessons will help them apply it to other areas of life later on.


How to be a successful leaner?

The study of student motivation and engagement has uncovered a great deal about the particular habits and traits of those learners who are more likely to succeed. Listed here are the 8 of these habits which appear to be the best predictors.

  • Effort: If you don’t put the work in, you’re not going to get much out. Those learner who literally put in the hours beyond the classroom, reap higher rewards.
  • Engagement: Staying focused and on-task. Not getting distracted by things that are going on around you off by disruptive peers.
  • Skill development: Just like playing the guitar or becoming an expert batsman, you need to develop your skill as a learner. This might include note taking, essay writing or honing your listening skills.
  • Participation; being involved in what’s going on in class. Ask and answer questions and help others who might be struggling. Being fully involved in what’s going on is an important part of the learning process.
  • Attendance: Turning up for lessons – there is a casual relationship between attendance and exam success.
  • Self-concept: how you see yourself as a learner. A positive self-concept is positively correlated with achievement. However, self-concept needs to be realistic and goals achievable –over estimation can be an equally damaging as under estimation.
  • Persistence: Not giving up, even when it gets difficult! We quite often use the terms resilience and buoyancy for this ability to bounce back after failure.
  • Enjoyment of learning: Not seeing learning as something you a forced to do, but rather something that can be enjoyable and personally fulfilling .Although some will use the term ‘enjoyment of school’ I would argue that school isn’t necessarily a prerequisite for success .I’m reminded of a year 12 people who once commented that she couldn’t wait to start the A2 work, “I know it sounds sad “, she said, I just live learning.