Writer: Hayden Coombs
Structuring High Engagement & Participation in the Classroom
Faculty Conference 2011
When students genuinely care about what they are learning, the will actively engage themselves in the learning process. At the recent faculty conference, Brother Mark Orchard said, "We know when the students are most engaged in the learning process when we can get them to ask their own questions."
Getting students to engage themselves in the learning process can be a difficult task for even the most experienced teachers. According to Brother Orchard, creating a comfortable environment is the first step to getting increased student engagement. "Safety in the class room is the first principle to student engagement." He continued by saying, "As a teacher, you need to create an environment that allows the student to manifest their knowledge. Once they feel this sense of security, they will share."
Having students engaged is highly important. A student who is actively participating in class will retain much more information than a student who just goes to class and listens to what is said. Brother Orchard was passionate when he said that every student deserves a chance to ask questions and be heard.
In his closing statement, Brother Orchard delivered a powerful message to his colleagues when he said, "When my students weren't participating, it wasn't their fault."