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How to keep students motivated: 21 simple ideas

How to keep students motivated: 21 simple ideas

Even when children study according to the best textbooks and using the latest educational technologies, this will not work if they do not have sufficient motivation to learn. Internal and external motivation is a key factor in the success of learning at all stages.

Even when children study according to the best textbooks and using the latest educational technologies, this will not work if they do not have sufficient motivation to learn. Internal and external motivation is a key factor in the success of learning at all stages.

Teachers can maintain this motivation in their students. Of course, this is not easy to do: each child has a different motivation, and it may take a lot of time and effort to shape it in the classroom. Even experienced teachers sometimes find it difficult to stay motivated.

Whether you are taking the first steps in teaching children or you already have experience, you can use certain methods to motivate children and develop their potential.

21 ways to motivate students to learn

  1. Give children a sense of control

While teacher guidance is important to keep children motivated, an even better way is to give them some choice and control over the learning process. For example, you can offer students a choice to choose from or allow them to choose a topic for a project. This will give them a sense of control and encourage them to do more.

  1. Clearly state learning objectives

Students may experience frustration during the lesson if they do not know the ultimate goal. To stay motivated to learn, children need to know what is expected of them. At the beginning of the school year, tell students the rules, goals, and expectations of their work. This way, children will know exactly what they need to work on.

  1. Create a safe environment

Although students need to understand that their actions have consequences, positive reinforcement motivates them much better than threats. When teachers create a safe, supportive environment for students, demonstrate their faith in their abilities, children’s motivation to learn increases.

After all, children strive to live up to the expectations of adults. So focus on what they can do, not what they can’t do.

  1. Change the situation

The classroom is the best place for the learning process. However, when students spend every day at the desk, they may become bored. To restore interest in the subject or in learning in general, do not limit children to the walls of the classroom.

Go on field trips with them, invite guests to speak in front of the class, or just do research on specific topics in the library. The brain loves the new, and the new environment can be just what students need for extra motivation.

  1. Offer students a variety of experiences

Students perceive the learning material differently. Some children learn it better in practice. Others like to learn information from books or work in groups.

To support the motivation of all students in the class, combine teaching methods. So children with different tastes will be able to focus on what they like best. This will allow you to maintain interest in the subject and stay involved.

  1. Establish positive competition

Competition in the classroom is not always bad. In some cases, it motivates students to work better. Try to create positive competition in the classroom – use group games for knowledge of educational material or other methods.

  1. Use rewards

Everyone likes to receive awards for achievements. Therefore, with the help of various rewards you will be able to increase the motivation of students.

As a reward, you can use stickers or a trip to the whole class to the movies. This will force children to work harder and strive for new achievements. Consider the needs of students in the classroom to determine the appropriate reward.

  1. Make students responsible

When you give students certain responsibilities in the classroom, it unites and motivates them. Most of them see responsibilities as a privilege rather than a job, so they work hard. It will be useful to give such responsibilities to all students in turn, so that everyone feels important and valuable.

  1. Allow students to work together

Perhaps not all students like group work. However, many of them enjoy completing assignments, conducting experiments, and working on projects with other students.

Social interaction motivates children to achieve educational goals. However, at the same time, you need to make sure that the groups are balanced and that all students do the same amount of work.

  1. Praise students for their achievements

No way of motivating works as well as praise. Even as adults, we need praise and recognition, especially for children.

Students’ motivation increases when the teacher publicly praises them for a job well done.

  1. Encourage students to introspect

Most children want to succeed, they just need help to understand what needs to be done.

One way to motivate students is to allow them to look at themselves from the side and see their strengths and weaknesses. For students, this is better than criticism or praise from the teacher, because it gives them a sense of responsibility for achieving their goals.

  1. Set a good example for students

To develop children’s interest in learning, set an example for them. When you are passionate about the subject, children’s interest will also increase. And this simple way really works!

  1. Get to know your students

Getting to know your students doesn’t just mean remembering their names. Children need to be reassured that the teacher is genuinely interested in them and cares for them and their success.

When students feel valued, they feel safe. This motivates them to work harder, because they seek praise from someone who respects their personalities.

  1. Consider the interests of students

When you are interested in the lives of your students, it gives you additional benefits. You can link the learning material to the interests of children or their life experiences. This will make the learning material more interesting and understandable for children, as well as increase their motivation.

  1. Help students find inner motivation

When your teaching methods motivate students, it’s great. However, it is equally important to teach children to find intrinsic motivation.

When you help them find their own reasons for doing learning tasks, working hard is the best thing you can give them. Personal motivation of students can be interest in the subject, the desire to enter the university, etc.


  1. Help students cope with anxiety

Some students are very concerned that they may have learning difficulties, so this becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. Make it clear to such students that learning difficulties are not the end of the world. Offer your child support regardless of his or her academic achievement, and make sure he or she does not feel depressed or give up.

  1. Set high but achievable goals

If you do not raise the bar in learning for your students, they will usually not want more. Children love it when they are allowed to complete tasks on their own. If they believe that they can achieve their goal, they will try to live up to your expectations. So do not be afraid to raise expectations and set higher and higher goals.

  1. Give feedback to students and offer opportunities for development

Children who have difficulty learning can sometimes feel incapacitated, and their motivation is lost. In such situations, it is important for the teacher to give feedback to the students.

The student must know exactly what he did wrong and how he can avoid such mistakes next time. This will help keep him motivated to work hard.

  1. Track student progress

Sometimes students do not realize how far they have come in performing a task. This is especially true of subjects with whom they have difficulty.

Tracking progress in learning subjects is useful for both teachers and children. Teachers use this method to clearly see how each student’s skills develop throughout the year.

  1. Add fun to the learning process

Of course, you should not turn all the lessons into a game or entertainment. However, students who find school a fun place are more motivated to learn than those who find school boring.

Adding a few fun activities to your lessons will help students who are having a hard time learning to stay involved and make the class a friendly and attractive place for everyone.

  1. Provide opportunities for students to succeed

Even the best students can be frustrated when they feel that their achievements are not recognized, or when they face a very difficult task. Make sure all children have the opportunity to show their strengths and feel valued and involved in class life. So their motivation to learn will be high.