More than one teacher and parent often encounters a problem when the child doesn’t want to listen to instructions, participate in classes or simply refuses to cooperate. And it’s hard to teach someone when the person is not interested in what we want to communicate. So how do you get to a child and get him to listen to us?
This question may have many answers, but we want to focus on one of them that always works in our case – teaching through play. What do we mean by that? Above all, to vary the teaching formulas! Anyone who remembers the times of elementary school will most likely agree that sitting for 45 minutes in a bench was not easy – we were full of energy and we wanted to have fun, which was aided by being surrounded by a group of colleagues. It is no different with children today. Actually it’s even more difficult for them, especially since the Internet and smartphones have become popular – and therefore came additional distractors, effectively disturbing concentration and making it increasingly harder to focus on the subject of the lesson. Thus, to make sure that their attention will not be focused on the screens, only on what we have to communicate, we recommend a variety of activities – preferably in the form of fun. If a child is enjoying what he is doing, he is more strongly involved and the results are better. Confirmation of this thesis was demonstrated in 2007 by neuroscientist Judy Willis, in the “The Neuroscience of Joyful Education” document, where she pointed to correlations between greater activity of the child’s brain in all activities that are connected with what the child itself identifies as fun. And analogously – if the area of enjoyment ends, then the activity of the brain decreases.
But why specifically play, often associated by adults with something infantile and not matching the serious image of an educational institution such as a school? First of all, because fun is one of the most natural processes for children – after all, most of the free time they have, they spend mostly on fun. What we recommend is the use of energy and motivation, which the youngsters have, to do something that will also teach them in this process. And we can do it in a number of ways – with an engaging board game, which activates the youth in terms of logical, creative and sometimes also abstract thinking, or in the form of movement games that can be combined, for example, with the acquisition of new knowledge. The number of solutions is huge and it is worth to diversify them, because children can quickly get bored with something that is not sufficiently engaging and stimulating for them.
Pupils involved in the lesson learn in a fun atmosphere and gain abilities far beyond transcribing excerpts from the textbook to notebooks and memorizing the poems by heart. And you do not have to persuade them to participate in the game, which will be appreciated by parents who encounter problems asking their children to do their homework or prepare for an upcoming test.
Furthermore, this form of teaching can also be much more pleasant for the parent and/or teacher. Instead of feeling that he is competing with a child and almost fighting for his attention, he can devote a moment to making the pupil happy, combining the pleasant with useful.