Learning Design Part 7


The information below is taken from the Leaders Resource – Getting Started developed by the Teaching and Learning Services team DECD.

The fifth part of Learning Design is How will we engage, challenge and support their learning?


“Children and young people do what they see adults enjoy”. If we show passion, enthusiasm and a genuine interest in what we are teaching students are more likely to respond in kind than if we turn up to class negative and disinterested. Our level of motivation is often reflected back to us through our students.

Engagement could be described in two ways, compliance engagement and deep engagement. Considering these  I was confronted with the fact that mostly my classes are just compliantly engaged. My students turn up and do what they are told, complete tasks, engage in conversation and undertake my classes. Is this deep engagement? Probably not. Is it a higher level of engagement than classes whose students don’t comply, yes. According to David Price (Learning Futures Engaging Students, 2010) deep engagement encompasses the following:

• Cares not just about the outcome, but also the development of their learning
• Takes responsibility for their learning
• Brings discretionary energy to their learning task(s)
• Can locate the value of their learning beyond school and wishes to prolong their learning beyond school hours.
How many of us have students at the compliance end of the engagement continuum and how many do we have at the deep end? How we move students along this continuum requires us to continue to develop our pedagogy about how students learn, what engages them and how we will embed this in our day to day practice.

Challenge and Support

When we expect that we have an impact on student achievement, we are right. When we expect that we are impotent, we are also right.” Is every student challenged to reach his/her personal best or just those who ‘do’ school well? (TFEL Framework pg 41). It is often easy to move support away from those that don’t seem to want to help themselves and give that extra time to someone who demonstrates enthusiasm for the learning. We have a professional responsibility to push, extend and support ALL students no matter how hard this might be at times.

Can we engage, challenge and support every student all the time, maybe not. Should we aim to as often as is humanly possible, absolutely.

Things to remember when we are trying to engage, challenge and support students:

• How can we hook them in? (engagement that goes further than merely getting students to comply with our requests)
• How can we stretch all learners?
• What will be needed to ensure all learners achieve the intended learning?
Video – Engaging and Motivating Students

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