Thursday, June 30, 2011

Teaching The Non-Conforming Student

In last week's blog, we discussed the issues arising from parenting a non-conformist. Teaching a non-conforming student is even trickier, because you have a whole classroom of students, not only Johnny Non-Compliant.

There is no single magic solution. However, research suggests that the following techniques have a good chance of achieving positive results:
  • be respectful towards the student
  • be a person worthy of the student's respect
  • give the student attention and positive reinforcement
  • offer the student a face-saving "out" from any dispute they may be involved in
  • try to satisfy as many Learning Style needs of theirs as you practically can, with the help of our LSA tools

Gifted students are often non-conforming, often due to their attitude of "I'm so smart I don't need to do this worksheet" or due to their history of being bored at school. If Johnny Non-Compliant is a bright child, you can overcome his frame of mind by stimulating his interests and creativity. Get him on your side by admitting that sometimes the tasks you ask him to do will be way below his capability, but you have a good reason for wanting him to do it anyway (to memorise something, to increase the speed of his performance, to teach him perseverance, to keep him busy). Ask him to help you tutor one of his peers - teaching something is often a good way of really understanding the concept on a deeper level.

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