This week I surveyed my class about how engaged and motivated they thought they were (my teacher inquiry this year is on student engagement within a maths context. The format I used was an online survey called Survey Monkey. It’s amazingly easy to set up, free and very interactive (exactly what we expect in our rather spoilt, Web 2.0 existence). The results were far from shocking, in fact, they were quite reassuring.
I asked the students a range of questions on topics such as how much they thought they were learning and what helped them stay focused and motivated. Here were some snapshot statements on the results.
– Nearly 80% think they are mostly or always motivated to learn in class.
– 67% think that computers mostly or always motivate them to learn and 73% think that the
computer has helped them learn.
– 84% find hands on activities help them stay motivated during maths small groups.
– The highest rated options to alter small group maths times were
– hands on activities,
– increased time,
– more web based tools / interactives.
The idea that hands on learning and digital environments increase student engagement are not new by any stretch. This survey has, then, validated and encouraged me to continue along the path our class is on.
There were some results, however, that are contrary to what research tells us. The class rated ‘Knowing the reason why we are learning something’ as the least likely to motivate and engage them. Maybe I haven’t promoted this aspect enough in class for them to experience the benefits? Perhaps, also, they don’t feel like they have had the permission in the past to ask or even think why.
So, how will this impact my teaching?
– More Hands ON activities?
– More Digital Tools?
– More TIME?