Thursday, May 6, 2010

Learning and Teaching, chapter XIII

In Chapter XIII of 'Learning and Teaching', the authors address the issue of getting and holding the attention of students. Many of their points echo what John Milton Gregory says about the subject in 'The Seven Laws of Teaching'.

These are excellent reminders for us, especially as we near the end of the school year.

"[The teacher] must have the undivided attention of his class if he is to teach well. If the pupil's attention is somewhere else, the pupil himself might just as well be somewhere else...for either the pupil is getting nothing at all or he is getting the wrong impression and distorted notions and is being established in the habit of inattention."

"The best way--in fact the only way--to get attention is to arrouse interest."

"Voluntary interest...should be expected only as a result of interest in some ultimate purpose to which the lesson contributes. Interest is the motive; attention is the resultant state of mind. If we can get our pupils genuinely interested, we amy be sure that the attentive attitude, whole-souled effort and activity, mental and physical, genuine absorption in what is being said or done will be the result."

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