Getting students engaged and interested in what you’re teaching can be tough, especially when you’re working with a teacher’s budget, so here are some cost-efficient and fun ways to get your class started!
1) Brain Busters
Brain busters come in all shapes and sizes and are a fantastic way to start your class by getting your students’ minds working. They don’t even have to directly relate to your content area, they just need to stimulate the minds of your students and cause them to try to think “outside the box”
2) _____ of the day
Something of the day can get your students interested and is a good way to start every day. This can be an element of the day, an organism of the day, or even make it longer term, like scientist of the month. You can really make this your own and even ask the students to come up with ideas or present their own!
Demos are a great way to show a phenomenon that you’re going to be talking about and get your students excited to figure out what’s going on fundamentally. You can find tons of demos all over the internet, many of which are cheap and easy. One of my favorites is fire soap bubbles because it’s quite the show and great for leading into combustion! More information can be found at https://www.stevespanglerscience.com/lab/experiments/fire-bubbles/
Many students see what they’re learning in school as strictly meant for school and it doesn’t affect their lives outside of it when, in reality, students are surrounded by science everywhere they go. A great way to show them this is by showing them articles that integrate what they’re learning and the world around them. Tons of these articles can be found at https://www.acs.org/content/acs/en/education/resources/highschool/chemmatters.html
4) Simulations and Animations
Simulations and animations can really help your students get more hands-on experience with some of the concepts that they may not be able to in person. Good animations can be great for showing molecular level interactions and one http://vischem.com.au/ has plenty of these. https://phet.colorado.edu/ has tons of simulations available for free for all sorts of topics.