Tuesday, June 10, 2014

This is Boring!

As an educator I'm sure you have heard the "This is Boring" statement mentioned at one time or another.  One of my high school teachers, who I respected, even had a snappy comeback when kids would say the "boring" comment in his class.  He said, "Only boring people get bored".  What a comeback!  Kind of spun it back onto the student.  I liked it so much that I even borrowed,  of course giving my high school teacher credit, when a student of mine would say that in one of my classroom.

After using the snappy comeback a time or two I eventually viewed the "boring" comment in a different light.  At first I really took those comments personally and believed if my students were bored then I wasn't a good teacher.  After some reflection, I concluded the "boring" comment less as a judgement statement and more of barometer of when I needed to change things up in the classroom.  For the most part students that are generally engaged don't view the content or the lesson as boring.  So I took "boring" to mean the students were not engaged in the lesson.  Once I learned this trick then I would change things up in a classroom or lesson to keep the student engagement fresh.

Sometimes it was as simple as rearranging the actual classroom around at different times of the year and other times it was rearranging the way a lesson was structured. Whatever way that was used I learned two things in "This is Boring" process.  Number one, listen to the students when they are not engaged and number two, make the changes when student engagement isn't happening.   I've come across a couple great links that have some tips on making a lesson a little less boring.  I hope you don't find them boring.

Refuse to be a Boring Teacher

25 Tricks to Improve a Boring Lesson