Boys learn better when creative approaches to teaching are used

Feb 02, 2007

With the new school year just beginning, educational experts at the University of Western Sydney say boys can enjoy as much social and academic success as girls if educators employ creative approaches to teaching and learning.

While there is no quick fix to improving boys' social and educational outcomes, research has revealed that it is important to establish strong teacher-student relationships, with a focus on student interest, voice and control, which would offer all learners - particularly boys - a dynamic learning environment.

Research team member, UWS lecturer Geoff Munns, from the School of Education, says the project concentrated on boys from Indigenous, low socio-economic, rural and isolated backgrounds.

"Boys from these backgrounds have historically experienced more social difficulties and under-achieve academically compared with other students," Dr Munns says.

Successful strategies used included using culture-based programs to encourage higher motivation by linking community life to school. In one school, indigenous students took part in cultural activities during school time with elders in traditional settings rather than in the classroom.

"The schools showed that tailoring the education to motivate and engage students improved rates of attendance, reduced suspensions and improved literacy," he says.

"There were also improvements in students' self-image and self-esteem, school and classroom relationships."

The report entitled "Motivation and Engagement of Boys: Evidence-based Teaching Practices" found that schools and educators who collaborated to look for fresh perspectives and innovative solutions could better address various teaching issues such as misbehaviour, low attendance and literacy.

The research identified pre-schools, primary schools and secondary schools - both government and non-government - that have helped boys' social and academic success by focusing on the relationship between education practices and boy's motivation and engagement.

It recommends that Australian educators develop better curriculum policies by incorporating the extended knowledge of networks of teachers, students, parents and community members, and incorporate 'real world' professional development for teachers.

Source: University of Western Sydney

Explore further: Experts call for higher exam pass marks to close performance gap between international and UK medical graduates

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Can new understanding avert tragedy?

Apr 17, 2014

As a boy growing up in Syracuse, NY, Sol Hsiang ran an experiment for a school project testing whether plants grow better sprinkled with water vs orange juice. Today, 20 years later, he applies complex statistical ...

Sociology professors asks 'Is teenage suicide contagious?'

Apr 11, 2014

A paper on teenage suicide written by two assistant professors of sociology at the University of Memphis will be published in the field's flagship journal, the American Sociological Review, in April. "Are Suicidal Behavi ...

Study challenges claims of single-sex schooling benefits

Feb 03, 2014

As many American public school districts adopt single-sex classrooms and even entire schools, a new study finds scant evidence that they offer educational or social benefits. The study was the largest and most thorough effort ...

Recommended for you

Obese British man in court fight for surgery

Jul 11, 2011

A British man weighing 22 stone (139 kilograms, 306 pounds) launched a court appeal Monday against a decision to refuse him state-funded obesity surgery because he is not fat enough.

2008 crisis spurred rise in suicides in Europe

Jul 08, 2011

The financial crisis that began to hit Europe in mid-2008 reversed a steady, years-long fall in suicides among people of working age, according to a letter published on Friday by The Lancet.

New food labels dished up to keep Europe healthy

Jul 06, 2011

A groundbreaking deal on compulsory new food labels Wednesday is set to give Europeans clear information on the nutritional and energy content of products, as well as country of origin.

Overweight men have poorer sperm count

Jul 04, 2011

Overweight or obese men, like their female counterparts, have a lower chance of becoming a parent, according to a comparison of sperm quality presented at a European fertility meeting Monday.

User comments : 0

More news stories

Teachers' scare tactics may lead to lower exam scores

As the school year winds down and final exams loom, teachers may want to avoid reminding students of the bad consequences of failing a test because doing so could lead to lower scores, according to new research published ...