While many people believe that schools should focus only on academic curricula, I strongly advocate the inclusion of more enjoyable activities in order to maintain student engagement and therefore improve learning outcomes, as many young people struggle to remain focused on strictly educational tasks.
Learners who are required to absorb information via conventional academic methods often experience problems with focus and attention. More specifically, repeatedly performing the same memory-based task throughout one’s school career is likely to cause boredom and ultimately result in student disengagement. In several schools in the UK, to take an example, it has been shown via survey that a considerable number of young people fail to remember crucial information simply because it was uninteresting. Adhering strictly to rote learning is therefore harmful to those students who require further assistance to remember key details.
However, this problem can be tackled by creating more engaging and entertaining lesson plans. Incorporating interactive media and a variety of classroom formats into the learning experience can improve overall attention and therefore increase the quantity of information available for recall. This is borne out by a study completed at the University of Melbourne which demonstrated that overall academic performance increased dramatically when students were properly and meaningfully engaged with the subject matter. Teaching in this manner can benefit all students and ensure that those learners who struggle to pay attention are not left behind.
To conclude, I strongly agree that schools should be at least somewhat entertaining since a more holistic approach to teaching provides better academic performance overall.