Lesson-Ology HTML version

Make Your Lessons FUN
Starters and Openers
It doesn’t take much to ensure a lesson fails. In fact, you can do it before the pupils get
through the door. A frown, some harsh words and over-the-top warnings are usually
sufficient to send the mood of your typical pupil plummeting and have them conclude that
the next 50 minutes are going to be a thoroughly miserable experience for all concerned.
But let’s assume you’ve worked hard to establish a warm and welcoming tone at the door
and the students trudge through to their seats with a reasonably positive outlook. They sit
down full of hope and expectation – eager to discover what you’ve got planned for them.
“What are we doing today Sir?”
The success of the lesson now depends largely on your starter or opening activity and it
could go one of two ways. If you manage to hook them and arouse their natural curiosity
about some new concept you have a good chance of leading them into a successful
learning experience, cementing your already-positive relationship with them and chalking
up another ‘win’. On the other hand, if your choice of opener fails to grab them, it is likely
you’ll spend the next hour doing nothing but sort out problems.
You need a strong opening or starter activity
Remember the saying ‘You never get a second chance to make a first impression’?
Whoever wrote it was obviously aware of the sheer carnage often created as a result of a
poor lesson opener.
If you lose your pupils in the first 2 minutes you’ll spend the next 58 minutes trying to get
them back. Lose them half way through the lesson and it’s a bit easier to re-focus them
but unless you get their attention from the outset, the rest of the lesson is going to be, at
best, very difficult. In Lesson-ology™ we include an ever-growing collection of engaging
generic starter activities which can be applied to any lesson topic. Just like the following
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