Over the years I have found that a great way to get your class motivated is through multi-age student collaboration.
It’s really quite simple, team up with an older or younger grade and do some work together. This could be a project or simply have the other grade level participate in an activity with your students.
Communicate with other grade level teachers and let them know you would like to collaborate with them. Set up a schedule and an activity and off you go.
In the past, I have had my Grade Two class go to a Kindergarten class and read stories to them. The Kindergarten student fondly remembered the experience and begged their homeroom teacher to bring the Grade Twos back. We visited them several times throughout the year. They all were extremely happy. The younger students had older students to look up to and the older students had a sense of responsibility and pride.
You could plan a more formal lesson activity or have a long-term project that lasts throughout the year.
Multi-age student collaboration is a fantastic way for students to build confidence and new skill-sets.
Even an activity with minimal planning will be a big hit.
Give it a try!
About the Author:
Kevin O’Shea is an IB/PYP educator currently based in Beijing, China. He is a father, husband, and avid conservationist. Kevin is also the host of the upcoming Making Better Teachers Podcast as well as the host of the long-running Just Japan Podcast.