How to Combat Spring Fever at School
Rare would be the teacher who is not affected by spring fever during the month of April.
Your restless students are certainly no exception. Instead of trying (probably in vain) to fight the phenomenon, spend a little extra time planning lessons that will make class enjoyable for your students during this time. Here are some suggestions to consider:
• Be careful to build in relevance to make sure students are aware of the benefits of what they are learning.
• Consider using multimedia in your presentations to engage student interest. Music, art, video clips…whatever your students enjoy can be used to snag their attention.
• Sometimes tangible rewards can help students pay attention when they may otherwise be distracted.
• Challenge your students to beat their personal best on assignments.
• Challenge your students to beat each other in friendly competitions.
• If your subject or grade level is appropriate, arrange for your students to participate in a WebQuest project. To learn more, try www.webquest.org.
• Plan plenty of review sessions at the end of class so that students can see the relevance of what they are learning as well as the progress they are making.
Related Education Strategies
• Allow more wiggle breaks when students are restless. A thirty-second stretch break every now and then is preferable to a loss of thirty minutes caused by distraction and boredom.
• One sure way to make your classroom a livelier place during the month of April is to present a silly fact each day for your students to think about, dispute, talk about, research, write about, and enjoy. For example, did you know these strange-but-true facts from www.amusingfacts.com?
1) In 1982, Larry Walters tied 24 weather balloons to his lawn chair in Los Angeles and climbed to an altitude of 16,000 feet.
2) In the spring of 1975, a baby in Detroit fell 14 stories and landed on Joseph Figlock, who was walking below. A few years later it happened again. Figlock and both babies survived.
3) The Canadian province of New Brunswick had a bloodless war with the US state of Maine in 1839.
You can search the many fact sites on the Internet by using the key terms, “fun facts.” Another good place to begin is with either of these sites: www.hightechscience.org/funfacts.htm and www.factmonster.com/index.html.