Appealing to Boys in the Classroom

I recently put a literature feature in The Mailbox magazine Preschool edition on books that have big machines in them, thinking that the books would be particularly engaging for boys. In today’s classroom, boys are the ones falling behind. They tend to be more wiggly and rambunctious. Plus they often don’t gravitate to reading like girls tend to. In addition, boys’ imaginative play is often viewed as too violent and is redirected. Zero tolerance policies aren’t helping. Many schools suspend little boys for acting like little boys.

According to “What Schools Can Do to Help Boys Succeed” in Time, fewer and fewer boys are going to college. And, if the trend continues, it’s quipped that the last male will graduate from college in 2068. Yes.

So how do you engage little boys in the classroom?


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3 thoughts on “Appealing to Boys in the Classroom

  1. The best way to engage boys, or girls for that matter, is through Project Based Learning. When a child has a say in the project they choose to show their understanding, motivation and enthusiasm are a natural by-product 😀

  2. This year is a boy year for me where I have many more boys and only a few girls. Through my years of teaching I have learned that the wya to engage them is to be active and then more active. I teach using themes that boys tend to like best dinosaurs, animals transportation. But the best thing I use is movement activities with them. We dance or do a gross motor activity before I expect them to sit and do table work. On the playground we run and play games vs giving them to much free time. It helps them to self regulate better if you keep them busy and moving.
    On a positive note I have gone down a whole size being so active too. The girls in my class seem to love it as well. When I do one on one work I make sure I do the things the girls like with them.

  3. I invite active children to stand at their desk, rather than sit, to do worksheets (unless it’s handwriting: then they sit with their best posture.) Boys love animals and nature books, so I use them to point out digraphs or specific spellings that we’re working on. Magnifying glasses (from the dollar store, or pretend ones made with black paper) help them to stay on task. That good old standby – pushups and situps – help them work out some wiggles.

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