21 Ways to Encourage Learners Remain On Task

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

1. Get the student to organize tasks by dividing them into small segments. Establish deadlines and reward the student after finishing each segment of the task.

2. Minimize the number of current tasks by adding new tasks when prior tasks have been finished.

3. Let the student close the classroom door or windows to lessen auditory and visual distractions from outside the classroom.

4. Create a quiet area in the classroom where absolute silence must be observed.

5. Plan a fun educational learning experience (e.g., computer games) during the day to give an incentive for the student to remain on-task and behave appropriately.

6. Support the student in writing an agreement for themselves, designating a time to finish a task and avoid procrastination.

7. Become proactive. Work with the school counselor to design a schedule conducive to the student’s success (e.g., physical education scheduled the last period of the day, intersperse electives that allow greater freedom of movement with classes requiring expanded periods of concentration, etc.).

8. Make participation in extracurricular learning activities dependent upon the conclusion of class tasks.

9. Indicate what is to be done for the conclusion of the task (e.g., indicate definite starting and stopping points, indicate the minimum requirements, etc.).

10. Remove any peer from the immediate environment who may be interfering with the student’s capacity and ability to remain on-task.

11. Get the student to question any directions, explanations, and instructions not grasped.

12. Minimize the emphasis on competition. Repeated failure may cause the student to remove themselves from competition by not remaining on-task.

13. Give the student increased chances for help or assistance on academic tasks (e.g., peer tutoring, instructions for work, frequent interactions, etc.).

14. Give learning activities that increase the chances for “active participation.”

15. Make sure only those learning materials appropriate for completing the task are on the student’s desk (i.e., pencil, textbook, paper, etc.). Additional learning materials may distract the student (e.g., crayons, library book, etc.).

16. Get the student to take part in small group learning activities (e.g., free time, math, reading, etc.). As the student shows success, slowly increase group size.

17. Place the student’s seat so that they experience the least amount of auditory and visual distractions.

18. Assess the degree of task difficulty concerning the student’s capacity and ability to successfully perform the task.

19. Assess the auditory and visual stimuli in the classroom to ascertain what level of stimuli the student can respond to suitably.

20. Model for the student appropriate behavior in the presence of auditory and visual stimuli in the classroom (e.g., continuing to work, asking for quiet, moving to a quieter part of the classroom, etc.).

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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