Reaching Disengaged Students

One of the greatest struggles for a teacher when doing classroom teaching for students is to make sure all students follow the subject matter. Not all students love the subject matter especially for students who do not perform. Most students who are not achievers or naughty students are very challenging because they think that material is not important and not interesting, they are referred to as disengaged-students. Disengaged students are fairly easy to spot in a classroom. While some people may confuse quiet students or introverts as being disengaged, this classification does not always hold true.

A disengaged-student has no interest. They are not interested in some things during classroom learning such as, learning process, specific subject, specific teaching method used, etc. Problems faced by teachers about such students that they can often hold the whole class. It is important for teachers to find ways to re-engage students who are struggling to find interesting material. But I prefer to think of them as “fighters,” this kind of student is struggling to understand the material and find a way to understand the material better. A teacher should understand this.


In order for disengaged-students to get back on track, here are some strategies for teachers to reach them:

Stimulate students – Stimulation from the teacher is an initiative. Many students lose interest in what is taught because the material does not stimulate them. Do not use a single instruction method because it can cause many students to lose interest in what is taught, and difficult to concentrate or pay attention to. Stimulate students by giving a simple example before entering on the main material. This gives way for students to learn by example by observing directly what they are learning in the classroom. Sometimes students prefer simple things.

Make teaching fun for students – The word “fun” is preferred for students. It is important for teachers to instill students’ curiosity and excitement at the prospect of learning. Teachers can do things like, Include project and group work, Introduce variations in classroom and homework assignments, Provide information in different formats, Create games from lesson plans, etc.

Make a practical correlation – Most students become disengaged-students because they cannot find a correlation between the materials conveyed with what they find in everyday life. Many of them are struggling to find out how their material will be useful in the environment. Teachers should help to relate what they learn with real-life experiences and examples.

Involving disengaged-students in group work – The social benefit of group work is helping to generate learn interest. When they work and interact with others, they can pick up information that may not be as appealing to them as they hear it. They begin to see how their peers depend on them. When students are put into situations where they are forced to contribute to a project or task, they begin to take an interest in the material for fear of letting their teammates down. Involving these types of students in groups gives more existence.     

Give choices – Teachers should use various techniques during the classroom learning process. Include different ways of teaching, quizzes, assignments, projects, group work, field trips, games, etc. Involve students to choose teaching methods; it is very important to create responsibility for students. They will feel involved in the learning process in the classroom.

As a teacher, using some of these strategies can help disengaged-students get back on track. Create experiments with different strategies and analyze which strategies give more results for your students in the classroom.