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Changing Mental States

Author: Steve Hiles

Tips: Change the Setting, Change the Mood

By changing mental states often, you can enhance the learning process. If nothing else, you can prevent boredom and simple fatigue. Strike a balance between safe structured procedures and activities scheduled at predictable times with the occasional surprises.

One of the most effective ways to change a mental state is change the physical state of the person. Get the students up out of their seats frequently, reconfigure the classroom to suit new activities, and take the class outside for a change of scene. You can also use subtle cues to change the whole mood of the classroom -- turn off some of the lights or turn everything on full. Open windows or shut them. Turn on music or ask for silence. I talk a little more about this in my book, Get Started on the Right Foot.

The younger child, the more frequently you need to have them do something physical. If you want proof of this, check out a kindergarten class; watch the kids constantly moving around and you will see what I mean.

Until the next time, have a great day!

All the best,

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