When giving homework assignments to their students, teachers want them not only to learn the material well but to understand how it’s connected with real life. All academic knowledge should be obviously practical and, unfortunately, most traditional types of tasks don’t serve this purpose well. Although they help develop some important basic skills, many other essential ones just stay out of focus. That’s why combining of the classical assignments with the creative ones is crucial to ensure your students’ academic success.
Creative assignments are a powerful tool for enhancing critical thinking as they often don’t have ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ answer or strict requirements students should adhere to. They encourage students to make their own choices, which is highly valuable. Moreover, this type of learning out of class is more interesting than a simple cramming and will help keep knowledge in long-term memory instead of forgetting it in a week after passing a test.
In addition, creative assignments allow students obtaining some skills that are important not only for their further learning but also for the successful socialization in general. For example, they can work in small teams to complete some project and, thus, broaden their minds by sharing opinions and learn to collaborate effectively. Another great advantage of creative homework is its positivity. When students are suggested some tasks connected to their fields of interest or everyday activities they will become more involved and motivated. With such a mood it will be easier for them to solve even the difficult assignments.
The type of creative assignment you will give totally depends on your aims, your fantasy, and, of course, the subject itself. However, there are some general guidelines that may be effective for all such types of tasks.
It works better when students can clearly see how they can apply the material they’ve learned in real life and what instant benefits they will get. Small rewards that naturally come from the successfully completed assignment can motivate better than a high grade.
It’s a great idea to combine studying a subject with obtaining some essential technical skills. For example, students can present their assignments in PowerPoint during the class.
News, TV shows, and social networks can sometimes serve as perfect tools for creative home assignments. If your subject allows using it effectively, just benefit from it as students are often highly interested in activities like watching TV or spending their time on social networks.
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