How can I help my students learn independently and stay motivated?

How can I help my students learn independently and stay motivated?

Below are some suggestions that may help your students with topics such as time management, independent learning and motivation.

Many of these strategies come from Macquarie University’s Centre for Emotional Health Study Without Stress (SWOS) Program.

Time management

Plan a day that is similar in structure to a school day. Older students and those who are more self-directed may be more flexible. Many students are used to, and work better with, some structure that is similar to a typical school day.

  • Modify the start of the day.
  • Start on the right foot and include breaks early on.
  • Start with an easy task.
  • Add some physical activity into the day.
  • Allow students some flexibility to modify their timetable to suit personal needs.
  • Encourage older students to set an alarm to limit break time.
  • Break tasks into small manageable chunks.
  • Remind students that if they feel unsure, then it is OK to ask for help.

Motivation

Motivation is something we look for before starting a task. This is a fallacy. It is better to simply make a start in a small way, and then motivation kicks in! Time management will help with this, too.

  • Break work into small chunks.
  • Plan and encourage rewards.
  • Encourage teamwork.
  • Tailor learning activities.
  • Overcome hurdles.
  • Study space.
  • Consider providing a lesson on motivation.

Other helpful tips

  • Be on the lookout for anxiety and perfectionism.
  • Normalise it.
  • Indicate that support is still available.

In the video below, Lesley Smyth from the Centre for Emotional Health at Macquarie University talks to teachers and educators about how to help students stay motivated for learning during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Watch the video or download the tip sheet.

Video - How can I help my students learn independently and stay motivated?

Content owner: Centre for Emotional Health Last updated: 14 May 2020 2:08pm

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