Motivated students are enthused and show eagerness to study and contribute to the class. Great teachers work to motivate their students, they introduce an element of fun into learning and they inspire students to reach their full potential. A teacher shares tips on how she kept students motivated.
Henry Adams said, "A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops."
Good teachers can change the course of their students' lives with the inspiration they provide. Teaching is one of the most challenging jobs, a job like no other. A teacher can impact thousands of minds and leave an everlasting impression on them. A teacher can mould and shape young people into becoming achievers. It is not that teachers have a special magic wand – it is the little things that they do, that count.
What does 'to motivate' mean?
The most crucial aspect of being a good teacher is being able to motivate students. What is this motivation and how can it be accomplished?
Motivation can be different things but can be broadly described as the ability to rouse an academic interest in students. A class of roughly 40-50 students coming from diverse backgrounds and having divergent personalities is bound to behave differently. Not all students in a class can be brilliant neither can all of them be interested in academics. Some students cope better than others with the pressure of studies and the world they live in. Some students care a hang and remain unfocused. Some students have set goals and they know what they want in life, others have no plans of where they want to see themselves in a few years. Some students participate and show a keen interest in the happenings in class others can be a distraction.
It is the teacher's job to get the entire class on more or less the same platform. It is the teacher's job to make the disinterested interested.
How does a teacher motivate?
Students, especially those in their teens are full of youthful energy that makes them believe that they are supreme. They also struggle with various pressures, starting from those related to hormones to peer pressure. Students at this age can also suffer from low self-esteem. They face challenges that adults cannot relate to, and it is often that they are unable to cope with what is happening in and around them, leaving them disgruntled and amiable.
Getting and holding the attention of a class full of such divergent personalities is a challenge that teachers face. It might look to be an impossible mission, but believe me, it can be done. I have been there, and done that, and am here, to share how it can be done.
Remember you are in command
If you are unable to motivate your students you will not have their attention. If you don't have their attention you are no longer in command. When students have your attention they learn better and retain whatever is taught. They also become willing participants in the classroom activities.
As a teacher, your role is pivotal in shaping student behaviour and engagement during class. How you interact with your students will determine how they behave. If you are resolute and take steps to forge a positive relationship with the wards under your charge you will make a positive impact on them. Your goal is to motivate the class – the first step is to take it as a challenge, but keep in mind that the rewards will make up for all the difficulties you face. As long as you stay positive, maintain your calm and remain determined nothing should be able to deter you from reaching your goals.
Remember you are the potter and your students the clay. So, go ahead and shape them.
Here are a few effective approaches that you can use to motivate them –
Teachers often have this invisible wall around them that makes it difficult for students to approach them. You can be friendly, without letting go of the commanding position you are in. Let your first interaction with your class be a social one. You are going to be with the class for at least a year, so why not begin the year on a nice friendly note.
Choose the icebreaker activity based on the class you are teaching. Conduct a game or tell jokes if the students are young. For the older lot, you can have a question-answer session. Set rules, though, no personal or ugly questions. Let students ask you questions. The best part about doing this activity is that you can turn the same questions to the students and make them participants. A student asks you who is your favourite actor or sportsperson, or why you became a teacher and you can give a response and ask them who their favourite people are or what they dream of becoming.
Icebreakers are important because students begin seeing you differently. You become approachable - the 'cool' teacher. Once they begin liking you, they are more likely to listen to you.
Have no favourites
It is so easy for teachers to have favourites in class. The most studious and best-disciplined child often becomes the teacher's pet. No biases please, avoid discrimination. Students know when teachers like particular students over others. It hurts them and they begin disliking the teacher and the subject being taught. Treat every student at par.
Get them to participate
Think outside the box to make lessons interesting. Create activities where every student has a responsibility. Divide the class into small groups. Here is the key, let students pick who they want to be paired with. Students form groups with classmates they are compatible with – this ensures a rapport. Since such activities are competitive, students generally do their best to stay on the top. You can be sure of eager students, willing to participate and going all out to excel.
There is a sense of accomplishment associated with group activities. Ideas flow freely, students' pool in resources to make their ideas work. They begin using their brains. It is an exercise that stimulates various aspects and the results are spectacular.
Encouragement is an elixir
Praise and encouragement have a direct and positive impact on performance. They create a feel good factor – release feel-good hormones that lead to better performance. In encouraging and praising students' teachers make them feel good about themselves. It ignites a fire in them, to do better the next time. They begin looking for the teacher's approval and slowly begin to bloom.
Students get enthused by constructive feedback and sense that they and their work is being recognised and appreciated. They begin looking up to the teacher and seek approval and positive comments. They are empowered when they know their efforts are appreciated and recognised. This also opens the door to better interaction between students and teachers. Students are not hesitant to approach the teacher with queries and problems. It is a healthy bond that bolsters every student's confidence. Aim at recognising every student's contribution and effort. Make your students feel respected and heard and you will have an environment conducive to teaching and learning.
Have a reward system
In junior classes, teacher award stars to motivate students. Older students can be rewarded, by a fun activity session each time the entire class finishes a project/lesson/activity/assignment. It helps to take the focus off studies to relax a bit.
Set targets, and let your students know that once everyone has completed the assignment you would have a fun session in class. If your school has an AV room you could organise the screening of a movie. You could have a talent show or form teams and have a quiz. Better still get ideas from the students on what they would like.
I assure you your class will be all charged up and ready to 'tackle' the next lesson. Such small incentives are such a wonderful way of stimulating students minds.
Liven up your lessons
The goal should be to get creative and avoid boredom. Make your lessons interesting – use teaching aids, have students create presentations, have discussions. Make lessons interactive, rather than giving boring lectures. Call for students to make working models and posters. This is surely going to encourage them and get the best out of them. Whenever possible draw parallels with what you teach to everyday situations, so students see an association and the importance of the topic. Doing so also helps them retain stuff.
Use the tips provided here to create your own unique teaching pattern where you can forge a bond with your students and are able to motivate each child in your class to reach their full potential. If you have any questions, please leave them in the comments box and I will address them at the earliest.
POSTGRADUATE SCHOLARSHIP OPPORTUNITIESThe University of Dar es Salaam in collaboration with The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) is pleased to announce postgraduate (Master and PhD) scholarship opportunities to all Tanzanians and Citizen of Sub-Saharan Africa in the following study fields:
1. Food and Nutrition Security
2. Immigration and Refugee Law
3. Strategic and Peace Study
4. Climate Change and Sustainable Development
The Study will be conducted at the University of Dar es Salaam.
In addition to the specific application requirements of the study programme/course you are applying for (which are found in the Postgraduate Prospectus in the UDSM website), please note the following application requirements:
a) The last university degree must have been completed less than six years before the time of application.
b) Citizenship of a country in Sub-Saharan Africa.
c) Masters applicants must posses a bachelor degree qualification with GPA of 3.5 and above while PhD applicant must have a Masters degree recognized by TCU and the University of Dar es Salaam.
d) For PhD scholarships, applicants must be a staff member of a public or private university (or candidate considered for teaching or research staff recruitment).
Required application Documents
1. Signed curriculum vitae scanned in PDF; please use the Europass CV template (http://europass.cedefop.europa.eu)
2. Certified scanned PDF copies of all university degree certificates
3. Certified scanned PDF copies of all university transcripts
4. PhD applicants must submit a PhD research proposal including a detailed work plan (10 to 15 pages) and will be subjected to plagiarism test.
5. PhD applicants should also submit introduction/support letter from employer/potential employer
Female candidates and candidates from less privileged regions or groups as well as candidates with physical challenges are especially encouraged to apply.
Students already enrolled in the programmes of the same study fields can also apply for scholarship for the remaining period.
Duration of Studies
Duration of study for doctoral degree is three years and for masters degree is two years.
More details required by DAAD will be communicated to the shortlisted candidates.
A complete soft copy must be sent to the:
University of Dar es Salaam
Directorate of Postgraduate Studies
P. O. Box 35091, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
Phone: +255-22-2410500-9 Ext: 2010
Fax: Fax: +255-22-2410078
The application deadline to the University of Dar es Salaam is 20th February 2017. For further information please contact the Directorate of Postgraduate Studies.
Shule za sekondari za ufundi hapa nchini zinakabiliwa na uhaba mkubwa wa walimu wa masomo ya sayansi na vifaa vya kufundishia hali ambayo inasababisha wanafunzi wengi kushindwa kufanya vizuri kitaaluma.
Hayo yamebainishwa na mkuu wa shule ya sekondari ya ufundi ya Moshi Bw.Erasmus Kyara wakati wa kuaga jopo la walimu wa sayansi 33 kutoka nchini Korea ambao wamejitolea kwa muda wa mwezi mmoja kufundisha walimu na wanafunzi kwa vitendo masomo ya sayansi.
Amesema kwa kiasi kikubwa uwepo wa walimu hao ambao wamefadhiliwa na serikali ya Korea kumesaidia kuongeza uelewa mkubwa kwa walimu wa shule hiyo na wanafunzi kutokana na ufundishaji wao kuzingatia zaidi vitendo.
Kwa upande wake kiongozi wa walimu hao Profesa Hae Seo kutoka chuo kikuu cha Pusan Korea kusini amesema jopo hilo limeafadhiliwa na serikali ya Korea kuja kufundisha masomo ya sayansi kutoka na ushirikiano mzuri uliopo baina ya nchi ya Tanzania na Korea.
Kwa upande wake mwalimu wa sayansi kutoka shule ya sekondari ya ufundi Moshi mwalimu Abas Mhina amelalamikia tatizo la ukosefu wa vifa vya kufundishia pamoja na miundombinu chakavu huku mwalimu wa sayansi kutoka nchini Korea mwalimu Kunwoo Kim amesema changamoto kubwa waliyokumbana ni tatizo la umeme kukatika mara kwa mara.
St. John’s University of Tanzania (SJUT) is owned by the Anglican Church of Tanzania (ACT). The Mazengo campus is located at Kikuyu area in Dodoma Municipality, about 3.5km southwest of the town centre along the Mtera-Iringa highway. St John’s University of Tanzania is committed to a culture of quality, excellence and absolute integrity in the context of Biblical values.
The University invites applications from suitably qualified candidates to fill the following positions:
1. Job Title: TUTORIAL ASSISTANT (2 Posts) – School of Nursing (SONU)
(a) Reports to:Dean, School of Nursing (SONU)
(b) Duty Station:SJUT Main Campus, Mazengo – Dodoma
(c) Job Summary: With guidance of senior staff conduct teaching, research and public services as consultancy.
(d) Qualification: Holder of a Bachelor of Science degree in Medical Laboratory Sciences with teaching
methodology. Must have a GPA of 3.5 or above. OR Holder of an Advanced Diploma in Medical Laboratory Sciences and any other specialization in Medical Laboratory Sciences.
(e) Experience: With a minimum of three (3) years working experience in tertiary education institutions and/or medical laboratory.
(f) Main Duties and Responsibilities:
The Tutorial Assistant shall be responsible to the Dean of School of Nursing (SONU) for the efficient and effective preparing and delivering own teaching materials, problem solving and innovating skills, and recognizing those having difficulties, intervene and provide help and support. He/she shall specifically be responsible, for:
(i) Understudy senior academic staff including attending lectures, leading seminars, tutorials and practicals where applicable;
(ii) Assists in marking and grading assignments, tests, examinations and invigilations under supervision;
(iii) Assists in research and consultancy projects;
(iv) Participates in curriculum development;
(v) Assists in other service programmes of the department; and
(i) Performs any other duties that may be assigned by a competent authority.
(g) Salary Scale: Staff salary rank according to SJUT Scheme of Services
(h) Tenure:Local permanent contract and pensionable.
Mode of Application: Complete application package that consists of Application Letter supported with detailed Curriculum Vitae (CV), relevant copies of Certificates i.e. Degree/Diploma Certificates /Testimonials, Academic Transcripts plus Secondary School Certificates and their contact details should be submitted no later than: 17th February, 2017 to:
St John’s University of Tanzania
P.O Box 47,
Tel: 026-239 0044 Fax: 026-239 0025 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org OR email@example.com Website: www.sjut.ac.tz