Tips for Motivating Students in their Last Year of High School
Many students become bored in their junior and senior years of high school and drop out of school. Although these years are so important to their future, most students do not realize it. By giving it all up in these last years, students will never receive their high school diplomas.
So it seems crucial to liven up school programs in the last years to keep these students in school.
Most jobs today will not hire anyone without a high school diploma. So these students will have to get a GED and the majority will have to attend classes anyway to get their GED.
So why not finish up those last two years and get the high school diploma.
But students get bored and are anxious to become adults and quit.
So how can we save these students? Here are my suggestions:
1) Make classes exciting and fun.
2) Give out many awards at the end of each rating period. Not to just the brightest or fastest learners, but to many students for various things.
3) Involve kids in activities that reflect what they are learning in class.
4) Have classroom parties.
5) Give recognition to all students.
6) Find out the hobbies of your students and try to involve their hobbies in what they are learning in the classroom.
7) Make classes interesting. Bring in guest speakers or performers that will talk on the subject they are studying.
I know a performer who captivates young people and as he captivates them he teaches them history. He is a Scottish Bagpiper, Horseman, and Sword handler. He has been in over 50 movies and teaches actors how to ride and use the sword. His knowledge of Scottish history is incredible.
When he brings out all his swords dressed in full regalia the young people sit up and take notice, and are quiet as mice. So that is what it takes to keep teenagers interested.
8) Become a performer yourself in the classroom. Make history, mathematics, and science exciting.
9) Involve parents in classroom activities – parents who might have special skills such as performing to help liven up classrooms.
10) Use games in the classroom to facilitate teaching certain subjects.
11) Show movies that fit into the teaching of certain subjects. There are many movies that are both educational and entertaining.
12) Never bore students.
13) Put on plays in the classroom and make sure no one is left out. Plays can work well with teaching English, Literature, and History.
14) Create a new and exciting project for your students every week. This should be in your lesson plan.
15) Encourage students to join clubs. Find out what their interests are and if there isn’t a club available for a particular interest help students start a new club. Have them elect officers for their club.
16) Encourage all students to get involved in the Junior and Senior Prom activities. Sometimes these activities are carried out by a small portion of students. There should be a way to involve all students.
17) Encourage students to join the sports activities, the school plays, the Band (don’t forget about the cheerleaders and pom pom girls), the school newspaper, and the Yearbook. A school play can involve many, many students. If the annual school play doesn’t involve all students and only some, plan another play for the other students. Let them all have recognition.
18) Bring a ballroom dance organization to your school especially for the students who are having problems. Ballroom dance teaches good manners, coordination, cooperation, social skills, and healthy competition. It also builds self-esteem and makes life feel better for students.
A good movie to watch regarding this type of program is called “Take The Lead” starring Antonio Banderos as the real life Pierre Dulaine, a professional ballroom dancer who started a ballroom dance program in the NY public schools to help problem teenagers.
Another movie is called “Mad Hot Ballroom.” This is about a ballroom dance program in the NY City schools for younger students.
19) Have a mentoring program where brighter students can help the struggling students. Mentors could be available not only for studies, but also for extra-curricular activities.
If extra money is needed for these programs, there are innovative ways of raising money such as hoagie sales. Get involved in the PTA to encourage raising money for important school activities.
It is important to encourage all your students to stay in school. They are the future. With encouragement and recognition students will be inspired and want to finish up their senior year and graduate.