How to use focusing activities in the classroom


There are many ways to start a class with a focusing activity for your students. Here are a few:

Focus with a looping slide deck (note, this can take more prep time).

Just like when you go to see a movie in theaters and there are ads 'looping,' or playing over and over, you can create this with a powerpoint in your classroom.

The slide deck can feature anything from interesting facts about the university, popular trivia questions, to answers to students’ frequently asked questions, or announcements about upcoming events. As students enter the classroom, they can use these slides to start conversation with others, or just learn more about the various topics you have included in general.

Focus with an ordering exercise.

If you have a list of processes or procedures that need to be followed/completed in a certain order, use this as a focus activity. Post the list of steps on the screen, making sure it is out of order. As students come in, ask them to put the list in the correct sequence based on established criteria.

Focus with drawing.

Request that your students draw a process, a diagram, or illustrate a main subject from the learning materials they have been studying. Here are a few examples:

Draw the cycle of how blood flows through the body.

Draw a comic strip illustrating the main character’s journey.

Color code the map to show the boundaries between counties.