Excited & Engaged: 5 Tips for Online Educators to Help Students Focus

Estimated reading time: 2 mins

Are you one of the many tutors online helping students improve their confidence, understanding, and prospects through your services? If so, you’re already doing an incredible job. Still, you might be interested to know that there are a few ways you can do an even better job at positively transforming the lives of those you teach. 

Start by adopting these tips to help students focus: 

  1. Include Mini Acknowledgements

Try to offer praise for each task completed successfully. This step helps the child to know they are making progress and allows them to stay focused. It can be matched with an overview of the tasks in the lesson, ticking off each completed item as you go along, so the child not only gets acknowledgment of their achievements but also has an idea of where they are in the lesson. 

  1. Set Realistic Goals

Be realistic about how long each tutoring session runs. Students can only focus for so long, so try to organize sessions that are no longer than an hour at a time and integrate mini-exercises for kids to do in breaks. This approach will give them a screen break and get the blood flowing so they can focus on work again when the study break ends. 

  1. Reduce Distractions

One of the biggest challenges of tutoring online is controlling the distractions your students face. One major factor will be removing their mobile phone from the situation. Over 50% of US teens admit to spending too much time on their phones, and two-thirds of parents are worried about their teen’s screen time

To combat this pernicious problem, have students and their parents agree to remove phones from study areas. While this step is essential, it is also helpful to ask that your students do the following: 

  • Do not have other tabs open on their computer unless it is related to the lesson;
  • Have a quiet, clutter-free place to complete each session with you;
  • Ensure they won’t be disturbed during the session.
  1. Allow for Change

Lessons must be organized for specific times and days so parents and their children can put aside time and energy for online tutoring. However, the world is rapidly challenging for kids, and it can be hard for them to keep pace. Sadly, 9.4% of kids in America suffer from anxiety, and 4.4% suffer from depression. These numbers are rising, and as a result, children may not always be in the best position to focus on learning. 

With these factors in mind, try to be flexible and aware of each student’s needs. Doing so will help you ensure that your students have the best time learning with you during their sessions. In addition, maintain an open line of communication with parents so that if a child is struggling, you can rework the schedule to allow for that. 

  1. Accommodate Different Learning Styles

It is vital to allow for different types of learning so that children have the best possible chance of focusing and taking in the information you have provided. For example, one child might be a visual learner, while another is auditory-kinaesthetic. Every child will have unique strengths and weaknesses, and recognizing their learning types will help you accommodate everyone’s needs. It’ll also help students focus and learn effectively. 
Hopefully, with the tips above, you can continue to make an incredible difference to the learning prospects of your students while also enhancing their ability to focus on the task at hand.

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