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Good practice: Activating teaching in class

Every newsletter we highlight a 'Good practice' of one of our teachers, this time: 'Activating teaching in class' by Robin van Rijthoven.

Robin van Rijthoven is programme coordinator and lecturer of the study programme PWPO. According to Robin, learning can only take place if students actively process the material. But how do you encourage everyone to think, so it’s not just the same students raising their hands all the time?

One way to activate everyone is by asking questions about the materials explained. This is why Robin plans plenty of time to ask questions and complete assignments that cover the material. To get everyone thinking, Robin gives students ‘random turns’ by drawing a popsicle stick with the name of a random student on it. After asking a repetition or insight question for example (e.g. name a similarity between theories X and Y), students are given a few minutes to think about their answers and discuss them with each other. This encourages them to verbalise the material and sometimes give each other feedback. Robin then draws a random popsicle stick from the cup. The student whose name appears on the stick answers the question and the stick is returned to the cup. This gives everyone a turn answering a question, rather than only the students who always raise their hand.

Curious about the effects, tools, success factors and tips? Check out these and other Good practices on the Teachers' page on Brightspace. This space is only accessible to teachers.

Contact information

Organizational unit
Faculty of Social Sciences