Think to yourself when you are reading the next sentence. How many hours of contact time do you have with your student? And during this time, who speaks the most? Is it you, or is it the child?
It is not a crime when I say that in a classroom today, the teacher or the lecturer speaks the most. Lessons are more of a monologue than a dialogue or an interaction. Developing the skills we want to see in a child doesn’t come this way.
In a classroom situation, the time given to us is limited and hence we sometimes may not be able to take individual attention when it comes to the whole strength of the class. How do you inculcate certain habits into the student so that they take charge of their own learning? This way, the teacher can become a mere facilitator of content and you now suddenly have more time in your hands to do the important job – talking meaningful things.
Once you’re done going through the topic, make sure you inculcate the habit of independent work time for the students. This will help them go above and beyond bookish knowledge to master the topic.
Here are some ways you can bring about independency in a classroom situation:
- Give them an outline of the topic and give time for research. Discuss the topic in detail in the classroom. This makes way for interaction. Question and give them the liberty to counter-question you so that it is always a two-way stream. This creates excitement in the classroom and it is no more a silent one.
- Structuring the process is also important. Constant tracking of their independent learning is where you get to see the progress. Surprise and internal tests are a great way to track progress.
- Create relationships with them and have genuine and open conversations about how are they doing in class and how can they do better.
- Start doing this in small bouts and gradually increase the time interval of the independent learning period.
- Debate and discuss with the whole class to see their level of understanding and it also comes as a feedback to you on how to make the sessions better.