21 Strategies for Motivating Learners to Remain On Task

Are you looking for strategies for motivating students to remain on task? If so, keep reading.

1. Establish time at the end of each class period to finish unfinished tasks.

2. Establish clear expectations for the conclusion of tasks. Continuously deliver reinforcement and consequences to all students.

3. Give the student a selection of tasks and require them to select a minimum number from the total (e.g., present the student with 10 academic tasks from which they must finish 6 that day).

4. Connect clearly with the student over the duration of time they have to finish a task. The student may want to use a timer to finish the tasks within the given period.

5. Urge the student to manage their class performance as if they were self-employed. This should increase their motivation to be organized and fulfill their duties.

6. Reinforce all measures of improvement.

7. Find the student’s most efficient learning mode. Utilize it continuously to enable the student’s comprehension and remaining on-task for longer periods.

8. Give the student shorter tasks but more of them (e.g., modify a 20-problem math learning experience to 4 learning activities of 5 problems each, to be performed at several times during the day). As the student shows success, slowly increase the number of problems for each learning experience.

9. Make sure the student has all the appropriate learning materials to perform tasks.

10. Get the student to gather all learning materials needed prior to beginning a task to lessen interruptions.

11. Make the student become productive in the presence of auditory and visual stimuli for short periods. As the student shows success, slowly increase the duration of time the student is required to be productive.

12. Make sure the student knows the instructions for the task (e.g., present instructions in an assortment of ways; have the student verbalize what they are to do to perform the learning experience; etc.).

13. Give the student a list of tasks for the day and let the student select the order of the learning activities. The student may be in the best position to find the order of tasks they will be able to perform successfully.

14. Give a routine (schedule) that will minimize off-task behavior that may result in negative consequences.

15. Organize their surroundings to lessen the chance for off-task behavior. Minimize lag time by providing the student with enough learning activities to maintain productivity.

16. Observe the student’s performance in learning activities or tasks to make sure the student begins, works on, and finishes a task to be ready to move to the next learning experience in their routine (schedule).

17. Give the student a carrel or divider at their desk to lessen auditory and visual distractions.

18. Get the student to time learning activities to monitor personal behavior and accept time limits.

19. Talk regularly with the student to keep continued involvement in the learning experience (e.g., ask the student questions, ask the student’s opinion, stand near the student, seat the student near the teacher’s desk, etc.).

20. Get the student to chart their own record of on-task behavior. Praise the student for increasing the amount of time spent on-task.

21. Consider using assistive technology designed to help students to attention deficit hyperactivity disorder to concentrate. Click here to view list of assistive technology apps that we recommend.

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