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5 Factors Influencing The Choice of Activities for Students With Shorter Attention Spans

5 Factors Influencing The Choice of Activities for Students With Shorter Attention Spans | ITTT | TEFL Blog

First of all, I notice that adults have a bigger focus on what the teacher is saying and doing during the lesson, than the kids or teenagers. It is because, in my opinion, adults realize why they need to study English. For example, they will be able to find a better job or they may get an enhancement. So they know it is one of the important goals for them for a particular period of their life. And speaking about kids, they are too young first of all. They do not have a clue what is a goal and why they need it. The only thing they know is that their parents want them to study well, but it’s not enough in a lot of cases. And sometimes the kids don’t even speak their language well yet, but they need to learn English. They are full of energy all the time when they are awake and they want to run around and play, and it’s a normal thing. And they don’t want to sit straight for almost 2 hours (if you do 2 lessons in a row). They simply can’t allow it for themselves. Of course, there are some exceptions, but even these kids like to play. So we need to use their desire to play to teach them. It is useful for both sides – kids and teachers.

This post was written by our TEFL certification graduate Kelly P. Please note that this blog post might not necessarily represent the beliefs or opinions of ITTT.

General Rules

If a student has a shorter attention span, we need to come out with active games, playing which they do not need to sit right down and just listen. We need to encourage them to play with us. It is not hard to encourage kids to play some games, harder to encourage adults than kids.

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Activity Factors

  1. It should be interesting for all the students
  2. The students shouldn’t sit on their chairs and just listen
  3. It should encourage them to achieve something during the class
  4. It is welcome to have some movement in the activity
  5. We should consider the student’s character when we ask him to play

We can use these students for short activities, but including all the material we want to teach them. We can do 2 or 3 activities to cover all the material, divide our lesson into 2 or 3 parts, but make it more effective for all the students. For example, after they did an activity they are a little bit encouraged and interested in what is happening. Here we can this period to practice their listening skills or speaking skills asking them some questions or drilling some words and sentences. And also we can start here study phase and use board, worksheets, and so on. It is a really good time to study after the activity if your students have short attention spans.

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Also, these students may like something not usual, something that is extraordinary. They will be interested in it and they will want to know what is happening. And of course, speaking about the extraordinary thing, I don’t mean to show them new magic tricks every day. We just need to adapt and make more interesting our material and activities for the particular lesson.

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