05 July 2014

Keeping Their Attention

Every year I think it is increasingly more difficult to keep the attention of students in the classroom! Even with my kids at home, there are so many distractions vying for their attention. And with technology that gives us instant everything, it's even more difficult to sit at a desk and concentrate on something that might take more than 2 minutes to complete! Many times we as teachers get mad at students for fidgeting or doodling, but often the students are still listening and learning. In fact, for some it actually helps them pay attention!

Here are some great ideas I have found to help the easily distractible - giving them something to do at their desk that allows them to "be fidgety" but hopefully still pay attention!

1. Stick some scratchy side Velcro dots under the students desk for students to rub their fingers over.

2. Tie an exercise band around the legs of their chair so they can bounce their feet.

 Letting feet stay busy ... students can push on the band while sitting in their chair. This will help the child who needs constant movement.  I know I've had luck with the little bouncy cushions.  This is probably an easier and cheaper option. Also, helps those chair tippers;)
3. Fidget Rings - These look so amazing to let the kids have something to move around, but it is way less likely to fall on the floor or get thrown across the room since they wear it on their fingers!

Fidget Ring. This designer has created some amazing rings for both adults and kids who need to fiddle with something to help them focus.

4. Find ways to integrate exercise equipment in the classroom! Stability balls can be used as chairs. I even read about a school who got some stationary bikes donated and set up a "reward room" where kids could go read a book while riding a bike!

What are some other ways you have found to keep fidgety kids paying attention? I'd love to hear your ideas!