Motivate and engage your learners with your enthusiasm

With the daily grind of the classroom, it can be hard to remember why you became a teacher. Think back to when you were a keen new recruit, full of enthusiasm for your subject and full of passion for teaching. If you still retain this enthusiasm, hats off to you! If you’ve lost it a little, you’ll find it really helpful to get back in that mindset.

An infectious enthusiasm for your subject can’t help but rub off on your students. Hard-to-reach students, in particular, can very easily tell if you are going through the motions, or if you’ve got a genuine fire in your belly about what you are teaching. As a teacher, you need to show the way. What is your attitude to maths? Do you like it? Love it? Does it enthuse you? The difference between a good teacher and a great one isn't expertise.

It comes down to passion.

You know that maths isn’t confined to lessons. But do your students understand this? A top tip is to get to know some interesting maths topics besides the run-of-the-mill scheme of work books.

In this newsletter, we’ve given an example of how you can bring maths to life using the topic of Formula 1. But there are hundreds of other ideas you could use. Of course our own titles are full of interesting applications of maths – Maths in is the newest addition to our range - you can download free samples here.

I think all boils down to the extent to which you are prepared to 'step outside the box' and try new and innovative teaching topics and approaches. Some teachers are not willing to do this. They’re rushed off their feet and they're more interested in getting through the day in one piece with the minimum of stress, which could be why a frightening number of pupils leave our schools with a negative attitude to maths.

Your thinking and your personal enthusiasm are two of the key factors in determining your levels of success in motivating your students; so 'Think Differently', enthuse your students and have some fun!

Happy teaching!

Jayne Garner

Jayne Garner
MEd (Literacy), PGCE, Dip SpLD, AMBDA

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