The Secret To Increasing Student Engagement In A Classroom

March 16, 2016

Increasing classroom engagement is every teacher’s goal. While there are many up and coming edtech tools that support teachers and increase student engagement, many teachers have come up with creative DIY classroom solutions themselves. We asked some teachers to share their creative methods; here are a few:

Design & Puzzles

Paula Burgess, Math Teacher at Hume-Fogg Magnet High School (Nashville, TN): “My seniors in trigonometry have been working on a mathematical design project (involving empty cardboard rolls) that will not only enhance their math skills, but also give them an opportunity to present their designs to second graders as part of a project-based learning activity. We are making puzzle pieces to create a mathematical design using empty cardboard rolls.”

Lost at Sea & Marshmallow Challenge

Mike Provitera, Business Professor at Barry University (Cutler Bay, FL), Management Consultant, Book Author: “Two exercises that I like to use often in the classroom and in consulting are:

The Lost At Sea exercise: People select from a group of items and figure out which to use first in rank order if they were lost at sea. After the exercise is complete, the correct ranking and the reasoning behind it is revealed.

The Marshmallow Challenge: In my book, I discuss The Marshmallow Challenge, an 18-minute exercise that groups 4 to 5 people together to create the highest structure using 20 pieces of spaghetti, a yard of string and tape, and one marshmallow. I use this as an instructive design exercise because it encourages teams to experience simple but profound lessons in collaboration, innovation, and creativity. It’s also a lesson in incentives and skill sets: good incentives plus low skills does not necessarily equal success.”

Survivor 

Kristen Fusaro-Pizzo, 10th and 12th Grade English Teacher at Staten Island Technical High School (NY): “To keep my students engaged, I started playing “Survivor” in my classroom seven years ago, and it has become my “signature.” Classes are divided up into teams, and they last the length of a curriculum unit. During the game, teams are awarded points based on classroom participation, scores on quizzes/exams/projects, and classroom challenges.  The team with the most number of  points at the end of the unit wins a prize, usually gift cards to a local coffee shop.”

Taboo

Shaneequa Cannon, Former Classroom Educator at Young Women’s Preparatory Academy (Miami, FL): “I was a high school English & Language Arts teacher for over a decade. I found vocabulary to be instrumental to my students’ academic and professional development, so I adapted Taboo.

The vocabulary words we studied were the main item the students had to guess while the keywords and phrases from the textbook definitions were on the taboo list as well. Students had to find another way to describe their vocabulary words, deepening the understanding of the use and the meaning behind the words. Each student created three vocab taboo cards; they loved it when someone couldn’t guess their word because they made the card hard.”

Did you know AdmitSee provides free access to educators? Browse thousands of college application essays that you can use as examples in your teaching. We also offer exclusive interactive graphs that can be used at the school discovery and application stages.

About The Author

AdmitSee Staff
AdmitSee Staff

​We remember our frustration with applying to college and the lack of information surrounding it. So we created AdmitSee to bring much-needed transparency to the application process! Read more about the team here.




Browse Successful Application Files

New Posts

The ABCs of the ACT
The ABCs of the ACT
March 23, 2017

When you’re starting your ACT prep, sifting through test materials can be overwhelming. There’s a lot of information, both helpful and unhelpful, about the exam out there. So how do you know where...

Class of 2021 Regular Decision Notification Dates
Class of 2021 Regular Decision Notification Dates
March 20, 2017

College decision week is drawing ever closer. With so many different notification dates to keep track of, we’ve put together a list of Class of 2021 release dates to help you manage it all. ...

Golden Rules of Internship Etiquette
Golden Rules of Internship Etiquette
March 17, 2017

Excited for that internship you’ve secured for this summer? If you’ve had an internship before, or if you’re a rising senior looking to get a return offer, here are some key internship...

MIT Class of 2021 Admission Results
MIT Class of 2021 Admission Results
March 16, 2017

On Pi Day (3/14) at Tau Time (6:28PM), the Massachusetts Institute of Technology released its admission decisions for the Class of 2021. This year a total of 20,247 students applied to be a part MIT’s Class of 2021,...

UC Application Essay Prompts 2017-2018
UC Application Essay Prompts 2017-2018
March 15, 2017

​Are you considering applying to one of the UC schools? UC schools are known for being one of the best state school systems available, regardless if you’re an in-state or out-of-state student. To apply,...

Load More Posts