Teachers are always looking for creative ways to engage their students. Unfortunately, most of us have handed out an assignment and our students react saying, “this assignment is boring”. Once our students are bored, classroom management issues usually follow close behind. Numerous factors contribute to improving student engagement, like creating a positive learning environment, knowing our student’s likes and dislikes, and giving them opportunities to work on goals that are important to them.
Sometimes we may have to take a look in the mirror at the lessons, activities, and assignments we are giving our students. A static lesson/assignment like a traditional worksheet or packet can easily lead to disengagement. I have heard from many teachers that are frustrated students are looking up (Googling) answers to their assignments or even finding their whole worksheet online with the answer key. Easy learning activities and lessons are not as engaging. When students are reflecting, evaluating, collaborating, questioning, and making connections between ideas, they are challenged and more engaged.
The trick is, how do we accomplish this? There are many platforms available to teachers, both free and paid versions, that can be used to create more dynamic lessons and assignments. The Formative website, http://www.goformative.com, has a unique feature that can be used to create these dynamic lessons and assignments. When you click on the “+” button to create a new question within your Formative, you have the opportunity to upload your own previously created content. See screenshot below:
You can upload any PDF, Google Doc, Slide, Drawing, Word document, or image you have. (A maximum of 25 pages or 25MB can be uploaded at a time ) Once your document is uploaded, you can start using your creativity to increase the possibilities of your old lesson or assignment. All you need to do is click anywhere you would like on your document and you can add additional content or any of the various types of questions Formative has to offer. See screenshots below:
The possibilities of using this option in Formative are endless. Collaborate with your fellow teachers and share your amazing ideas on how to use this tool to enhance a previously static lesson into a more dynamic and engaging experience for your students.