3 ways you can use digital tools to boost student motivation

Many educators navigating the use of technology for learning have seen this scenario come to life in the classroom: you give your students an online assignment and a few minutes into it you start the exhausting routine of trying to guess who might be opening other tabs to play games or watch videos, while you figure out ways to redirect them towards their work. 

In fact, the switch to hybrid and fully virtual learning during the pandemic highlighted how students can become distracted and lose motivation when they are seemingly hiding behind a screen, causing many frustrated parents and teachers to loathe the use of technology in learning.

But before you give up on e-learning altogether and grab that printed worksheet, let me tell you that there is a world of wonderful apps and platforms out there that when used properly can actually INCREASE student engagement and motivation, and help you maintain it throughout the school year. 

My teenage students love technology. They can’t get enough of communicating and playing on their devices, and through trial and error I have found ways in which you can tap into that desire to interact with technology and bridge that into their learning. 

Here are 3 strategies that I have successfully used to increase student motivation and engagement, which will give you results you can measure from the moment you start using them:

1. Start giving your students real time feedback. One of the reasons why students start to look down at their phones or pretend to work while doing online activities is because they are having a hard time maintaining focus when doing self-paced work. Thankfully, there are many great online platforms today where you can privately and effectively communicate and guide them through their work, giving them the assistance they need to stay on task. Peardeck is an example of a tool that teachers can use to directly give assistance to students that need refocusing and reinforcement.

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