Students can have a habit of getting distracted. This can especially be the case when technology is involved, but with the many benefits of technology, it is a risk that many are willing to take.
Thankfully teachers can have the best of both worlds when it comes to a digital classroom. You can enhance your students’ learning through the use of technology, while still keeping them on track. If they stray, you can easily gain their attention back.
So how do you do that?
Establish Ground Rules
Teachers know that it is extremely important to establish basic ground rules in your classroom. Ground rules also need to be established regarding the use of digital devices. Laying out your expectations on what is considered appropriate use of the digital devices and how you expect your students to respond when you are asking for their attention will make life easier in the long run.
Install a Classroom Management System
If you have digital devices in your classroom, you need a classroom management software system. It allows you to regain your students’ attention through the tools that it provides. Classroom management software enables you to do things like pause your students’ screens, lock down the web, send your students messages, and more.
Create Cues That ask for Your Students Attention
It is important to create and enforce cues that ask for your students’ attention. For digital cues, rely on your classroom management software system. If your student is off-task, you can send them a message that asks them to get back to work. If that doesn’t work, freeze their screens so they have no choice but to direct their attention back to you so they can get access to their device back. If you are worried about students straying to websites that you don’t want them on, use a web filter to keep them on appropriate websites.
Something to remember is that you can’t just rely on digital cues to regain your students’ attention. You may have to reinforce the digital cues with in-person ones. Communicate with your students and let them know your expectations. If they are straying off task even with the digital cues, talk to the student one-on-one. Have a conversation with them and discuss the consequences off not staying on task during class time. If your whole class is off-task at once, deploy one of your other classroom management cues liking clapping three times or counting backward.
Like with a lot of things, getting your students to pay attention in the digital classroom can take time and patience. With the right tools, like a classroom management software system, it can be done. It is worth it because digital classrooms add so many extra benefits to your students' learning.