- Make Play a Part of Their Day: Active student participation in the learning process can create meaning and interest. Providing students with opportunities for play allows them to make connections with the learning concepts and construct meaning in a way that is both useful and purposeful.
- Give Students Choice: Providing students some measure of meaningful choice and control over the learning process empowers them to make content relevant through their lived experience. As students develop their understanding of a subject they will often begin to identify with the ideas and see them as personally valuable.
- Provide Authentic Experiences: When students can see that what they are learning in class is important and useful out in the community and world around them, they draw the connection that what they are learning has utility and value.
- Make Learning Involved: Active student participation in the learning process can also create meaning and interest. As students get involved in the nitty gritty of the learning, they visibly grow in their understanding of content and can make direct connections to why this content is important and impactful in the world in which they live.
- Make Learning Matter: When students see that their learning can directly impact the world in positive ways, they learn that the content is both valuable and essential to being a successful citizen. The experience then becomes just as important as the learning. And that type of learning cannot be done without that valuable experience.
When we make content relevant to students’ lives, create experiences that are valuable and rich, and provide learning opportunities that have an impact, meaningful learning is bound to happen.
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