At Betsy Ross, we want our students to feel safe, successful, and loved. Learning is hard work, so it’s important to make it fun so that students feel good about learning. There are some skills that require lots of “drill” practice, which can be less than exciting, but there are ways to make those practice sessions more engaging, both at school and at home.
Teachers may allow students to write with dry erase markers directly on a table instead of a white board, which feels like a big deal to the students, especially the first time- “you can’t write on tables!”. Some teachers use sand trays or other tactile activities, partners might quiz each other; the use of cheers, chants, and songs works very well; and, of course, making practice a game always helps.
At home, we have had students report going to the park and practicing spelling words with a stick in the sandbox- much more fun than paper and pencil practice! “Writing” words in the air requires no materials and allows for gross motor movement, which can help with recall later. For those who aren’t afraid of a mess, finger paints or writing with a finger in shaving cream are great options, too! With this spring weather (that we hope is here to stay!), sidewalk chalk becomes a powerful learning tool!
Whatever the skill, there IS a way to make it fun! When a student is bored or feels like an activity is too difficult, learning stalls, so the Betsy Ross team works hard to make every task as engaging and accessible as possible for all students.