28 Ways to Help Learners Focus on the Sounds in their Surroundings

Are you looking for ways to help students focus on the sounds in their environments? If so, keep reading.

1. Minimize distracting stimuli (e.g., make sure the classroom is quiet, lessen movement in the classroom, etc.).

2. Make sure that the student has sufficient chances for repetition of information through various experiences.

3. Reward the student (e.g., a break, visit briefly with a peer, etc.) for keeping eye contact and listening for a specific duration of time.

4. Make sure the student is attending before delivering directions, explanations, or instructions (e.g., keeping eye contact, hands free of other learning materials, looking at the task, etc.).

5. Move materials used for tactile stimulation (e.g., pens, paper clips, loose change, etc.) away from the student’s reach.

6. Show ideas following the outline of (1) Who, (2) What, (3) Where, (4) On occasions where, (5) How, and (6) Why.

7. Show directions, explanations, or instructions as simply and clearly as possible (e.g., “Get your book. Turn to page 29. Do problems 1 through 5.”).

8. Stand in the proximity of the student when delivering oral questions and instructions .

9. Separate at several points during the presentation of directions, explanations, or instructions to check the student’s comprehension of the information given.

10. Show oral questions and instructions concisely.

11. Give instructions on a one-to-one basis before assigning a task.

12. Provide mobility to assist to the student; regularly be near the student, etc.

13. Make sure that all instructions, questions, explanations, and instructions are delivered at an appropriate pace for the student.

14. Praise those students who pay attention to information from any place in the classroom.

15. Take the student away from the situation until they can demonstrate self-control and follow instructions when they have difficulty paying attention to and following instructions in the presence of others (e.g., at a school assembly, on a field trip, playing a game with peers, etc.).

16. Provide visibility to and from the student to keep their attention when oral questions or instructions are being delivered. The teacher and the student should be able to see each other at all times. Make eye contact possible at all times.

17. Plan essential learning activities , tasks, and meetings at times when the student is most likely to keep attention (e.g., one hour after medication, 45 minutes after lunch, first thing in the morning, etc.).

18. Make sure you have the student’s full attention when you are talking to him/her. Stand near the student, keep eye contact, and have them repeat the information.

19. Place the student near the source of information in the classroom. As the student shows success, slowly move them away from the source of information.

20. Show instructions following the outline of (1) What, (2) How, (3) Learning materials, and (4) On occasions where.

21. Teach the student instruction-following skills (e.g., listen carefully, write down essential points, etc.).

22. Teach and practice active listening skills. Urge the student to listen to what another person is saying and respond based on information received.

23. When ideas are presented, have the student listen and takes notes for “Who, What, Where, On occasions where, How, and Why.”

24. Teach and practice efficient communication skills. These skills include listening, keeping eye contact, and positive body language.

25. Move the student away from other students who may interfere with their capacity and ability to pay attention to directions, explanations, or instructions.

26. Teach the student listening skills (e.g., stop working, clear desk of nonessential learning materials, pay attention to the source of information, write down essential points, ask for clarification, and wait until all instructions are received before beginning).

27. Teach and practice information-gathering skills (e.g., listen carefully, write down essential points, ask for clarification, wait until all information is presented before starting a task, etc.).

28. Draft an agreement with the student stipulating what behavior is required (e.g., paying attention to information presented from any place in the classroom) and which reinforcement will be implemented when the agreement has been met.

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