The connection between classroom learning activities and the everyday environment is often overlooked. By focusing on finishing the syllabus, we sometimes forget to connect learning activities with the environment. These connections are important for students to see clearly the application of their learning to their daily lives.
So here are 5 Tips for connecting learning activities with the environment ... magnificently!:
1. Give examples drawn from the environment when you teach your students
Try as frequently as you can to connect the lessons with the environment. Try to give the example by using the environment so that students can see other perspectives. For example: A tree is not just a tree, a tree can be a way of learning how to make a sentence, a tree can be a way of studying photosynthesis, a tree can be an understanding of illegal logging and a tree can be a theatre background!
2. Always use simple teaching aids
Good and effective teaching aids can enhance students' understanding. The closer the teaching aids to the student’s life, the better. It's easier for students to connect with their environment. Let them see that the knowledge that they have learned is useful and is connected to the environment. No knowledge is learned in vain.
3. Always give students time to think and ask connection questions
When we explain something, try to open up the students’ minds with open ended questions that make them think and relate to the environment. What are some other uses for umbrellas? How can you count to 10 if you don't use your fingers? What objects in this class have the shape of a triangle?
4. Always give students time to say their thoughts and appreciate their views
After you ask the students to think, you should give them some time to think and allow them time to talk too. Whether by talking to friends or to you. There is no need to worry about the noise that the class make as long as the discussion is on the right track. Give them space to express their opinions and views. Appreciate their ideas. Avoid judging their ideas and increase their openness by providing guidance and support.
5. Occasionally use the surrounding area for learning activities
For better, deeper and lasting learning, take the students out of the classroom. Have classes in the field, in the hall, outside the area. Just be sure to plan the class and prioritise safety, security and get the right permission. By having the class outside of the normal classroom, it can give students the idea that learning can happens anywhere and in any environment. They will never forget these learning experiences.
PS: How do you train yourself to be open and accept people’s ideas?