Engaging Today’s Students Based on the presentation by Michael McQueen

Engaging Today’s Students

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Engaging Today’s Students. Based on the presentation by Michael McQueen. Michael McQueen:. The Nex Gen Group – www.TheNexgenGroup.com The New Rules of Engagement. Rule 1: Put Relationships First. “I don’t care how much you know until I know how much you care.” - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Page 1: Engaging Today’s Students

Engaging Today’s Students

Based on the presentation by Michael McQueen

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Michael McQueen:The Nex Gen Group – www.TheNexgenGroup.comThe New Rules of Engagement

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Rule 1: Put Relationships First

“I don’t care how much you know until I know how much you care.”“Today’s students learn teachers, not subjects.”Relationships are the key for engaging this group of students.

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1. Be AuthenticWhen Gen Y detect the slightest hint of

inauthenticity, hypocrisy or double standards, the shutters

If you are aiming to connect with young people, vulnerability, honesty and self-deprecating humour will always go a long way.

Must be vulnerable from a position of strength and not neediness or weakness.


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2. Be InterestedTo build rapport with Gen Y the key is to be

interested and impressed by them.Regularly try to discover something of interest or

concern for each student and then make a personal commitment to ask them about it.

Create an environment where conversations can start and naturally develop.

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Leverage events of shared interest e.g. movies, news etc

Engage in two way conversations – you need to share too

Be proactive in researching what your students are interested in.

Investing time and energy will pay dividends.

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Rule 2: Use Matrix LearningMatrix learning aims to highlight the relevance

and connectedness of learning to the real world.Asking “Why?” is not being challenging – they are

seeking relevance.Borrow examples from students’ own experiences,

technology and popular culture.Bring in the “outside world” whenever possible or

take them off site.

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Rule 3: Focus on Outcomes Over Process

Gen Y are highly outcome driven.Be flexible in HOW they achieve the outcomes.Clearly articulate the outcome and then give them the

flexibility, empowerment and permission to find their own way of achieving it.

Focus on only the really important “rules” – which ones are really worth the conflict, arguments etc? Which ones will ensure outcomes are completed effectively?

Is your frustration with Gen Y more a result of your own process driven rules and expectations than the specific actions, decisions and attitudes of this group?

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Rule 4: Adopt a Facilitator Role

The Information Age has profoundly changed the nature and needs of young people.

Teachers as the source of knowledge are becoming increasingly unnecessary.

In the Information Age the challenge is to sift through the sea of information and create retained knowledge that is both relevant and connected.

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Good Facilitators are ‘Master-Askers’

Need to know the right questions to ask.Need to teach the skill of learning how to learn.Avoid closed questionsStart questions with Who? What? Where? When?

How?Don’t ask Why?Ask one question at a timeNever ask loaded or leading questions

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Ask questions with an enquiring, curious and interested tone.

Never ridicule or dismiss a response.Answer a question with a question.Be genuine.Recognise that all questions have an impact.Reduce your expectations.

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Restorative QuestioningThis works well with students who are in conflictWhat happened?What were you thinking at the time?What have you thought about since?Who has been affected by what you have done? In

what way?What do you think you need to do to make things


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Good Facilitators Give Space For Self-Directed Learning

As teachers we need to let go of the process of learning.

Ask the right questions and then step back and let them go.

Give them the space and silence to connect the dots for themselves.

Answers that are readily given will tend to be dismissed as superficial, simple or naïve.

Questions that linger and allow for ambiguity and complexity connect powerfully with Gen Y.

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Good Facilitators Clarify What Has Been Learnt

We need to make the learning explicit.Many young people are not fully aware of what

skills they have.A good facilitator helps students retrace their

steps and to point out what they have learnt and explain why this is valuable.

This allows the student to see progress and development. This is key to keeping them motivated and engaged.

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Rule 5: Give Regular Positive Feedback

“Recognition is that all powerful motivator that babies will cry for, grown men will die for and Gen Y will work for.”

Encouragement and affirmation is a fail-safe tool.Develop the skill of looking for and ‘catching’

people doing the right thing and then responding well.

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“Whale Done”Praise immediately and in a sincere way.Be specific about what they did right or almost right.Share your positive feelings about what they did.Encourage them to keep up the good work.Affirm Publicly esp in Years 9 – 12.Affirm personally.Affirm proportionately to the achievement.Affirm practically.

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How To Give Critical FeedbackGet your emotions under control.Find a private place.Focus on the action, not on the person.Be specific.Be timely.

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Be calm.Reaffirm your faith in the student.Stop talking.Define positive steps.Get over it.

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Rule 6: Use Stories To Make Your Point

When engaging Gen Y never underestimate the power of narrative.

The best way to show a principle works is to place it into a context of experience – through stories.

Stories allow the listener to attach their own meaning.

Need to design your content around stories.“While young people resist your judgement they

are very interested in your journey.”

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Telling Stories:Be authentic and honest.Be aware of sharing that is self indulgent and self

serving.Aim to promote growth of understanding for

shared experience.Tell stories pre-emptively.

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Be subtle and strategic.Don’t read your experience into someone else’s.Get to the point.Tell your own or other peoples’ stories.Share your failures and disappointments, not just

your successes.

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Rule 7: Go for Commitment, not Compliance

Gen Y doesn’t respond well to compliance for compliance sake. “Why should I?” Just leads to confrontation and frustration.

Commitment is categorised by opportunity, buy-in, motivators and outcomes.

Need to emphasise the positive benefits of the desire response. “What’s in it for me?”

What is in it for them – noble as well as selfish reasons.