Top Tips to Re-engage Reluctant Learners

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Reluctant Learning

There are multiple reasons why students lack the motivation to study. It could be because of their personal life, interests or even due to a bad experience with a subject.

Students might have a psychological problem; they might not be well with something that might be going around in their life. Whatever that might be disturbing them can be understood and solved.

It is really simple to make students take an interest in learning; it requires consistent effort and listening. You can make it possible for them to take an interest in learning using the following tips.

  • Get to know about them

We all want attention, that’s the basic human need. We do stuff to get recognized and we feel quite good about it. We love it when someone asks something about us; our face lights up, and we indulge in the conversation quickly.

The same goes with students. Some youngsters, actually a lot of them, have self-esteem problems. In the developing age, there is a lot of pressure on them, and they are learning to cope with them. Students have particular interests that they keep themselves involved with.

They play video games, do outdoor sports, watch anime etc. It is really helpful if you ask them about their interests. They feel comfortable, and they start to like you and will more enthusiastically follow your advice.

It is observed that teachers who are liked by students have better performing students. Student’s admiration towards you can actually make them like you.

  • Get them involved to make them feel important

Students who mostly lack interest in class tend to sit in the end. Make them sit in the center of the class. They will most probably interact with others there and will be more comfortable.

Studies have shown that students who are good at group work become socially successful and have a high capability of problem-solving.  Another thing you can do is involve them in something. For instance, if you are setting up a lecture or are going to do an activity, ask them to help you with the set-up. They will immediately light up and will have a sense of importance.

They will also be more interested. Generally students who haven’t been given attention to lack self-esteem and don’t interact much due to less confidence. Involving them can also make them have more confidence.

  • Give them a purpose

Tell students about the application of what they are learning. A lot of them don’t know where to apply the things and concepts they learn. This leads to them losing interest in studies.

One of the best ways to engage students is to provide them with a purpose of how the stuff they are learning will be used. People do stuff with more interest that they like and know will have a meaning to it. This automatically makes them become more proactive.

It is seen that children who know where the mathematics and science concepts are applied to do better in their exams and overall. Even with well known personalities once they got to know the importance of their work, they flourished.

  • Make it fun

Well, nobody wants to do chores and if studying is considered as a chore. Nobody wants to do it too. One of the biggest reasons students become uninterested is that they consider it just as a formality.

The problem with textbooks and traditional teaching styles is that they are not made for everybody. Everyone has a different style of learning. You must know how a particular student understands better. Some are good with reading and listening. Some with visual learning and some with hands on technical learning.

You can make studying fun incorporating a few techniques like:

  • Making projects and group work out of the topics.
  • Provide information in different formats.
  • Make games out of the lessons. 
  • Introduce variety in assignments and homework.
  • Give them the opportunity to come up with their own ways of understanding something.


  • Give them choices and add collaboration

Just as a chapter contains multiple topics, the modes of engaging students must have variety as well. You can use two techniques at once to do that. Assign group works in which students have a choice of presenting the work according to how they want. They will get creative with their work, and so they will engage themselves more too.

Collaboration during group work will make them comfortable making bonds and boost their confidence. This is highly important now as people have a lot of social anxiety nowadays.

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Austin has 10+ years of experience in teaching. He has researched on thousands of students-related topics, issues, and concerns. You will often find him writing about the common concerns of students, their nutrition, and what is beneficial for their academics and health both.