Did you know that the amount of research supporting the effectiveness of Learner-Centered approaches in the classroom is growing?(http://www.facultyfocus.com/articles/teaching-and-learning/a-learner-centered-approach-affects-student-motivation/) It makes sense, does it not? Have you ever been to a class where the instructor talks at you the entire time? There are no questions, no probing of the learner, and no interaction at all. Well, times have changed. Perhaps you could give the flipped classroom a try as I spoke about in my last blog. How about doing a little Role Play or Scaffolding in your classes. There are plenty of opportunities to make your class more about the learning.
An example of how I use Role Play in my class is when we talk about real life situations. I guide my students through the process of consulting with clients (in role play scenario, their peers). Consultation is a very important part of a hairstylist’s career. Role play gives the learners a chance to get comfortable asking clear, concise questions. It enables learners a chance to practice retrieving the proper information from the clients, which is vital to making the client happy.
I use scaffolding as a learner-centred approach in my classroom. This involves me the instructor modelling the skill and thinking for students, then doing progressively less for the student as they understand more and more. This is a great approach when students are taking clients for the first time. Initially students are nervous to walk up to clients and start the consultation process. They come to me for guidance and support. After a couple of times, the students feel more comfortable, their confidence level grows and they consult with the client and formulate a plan before they even need to speak with me.
Could you incorporate some learner-centered approaches in your classroom?