Teaching different demographics will require different approaches, which may come naturally to you or something you are needing to work on. Younger children tend to be more open to any teaching style, and are more willing to adapt to your unique style. However, adults tend to appreciate a specific set of teaching styles and are easier to judge or criticise your methods, which is why it is important for you to adapt your teaching to your adult learners’ expectations.
Here, we list down 3 ways you can grab the hearts of your adult learners so they will engage in class.
Be Straightforward, Less Fluffy
With kids, the best approach is not to be very direct and straightforward. When telling stories or explaining a concept, you may be able to be less logical and more creative. However, adult learners would appreciate a straight-to-the-point explanation of a concept. They tend to be easily wooed by logical explanations of a concept’s relevance and procedures. It’s important to act professional and be straightforward, which means that if you do not have an answer to one of their questions, be honest about it and get back to them after you have figured it out.
Be Confident and Sure of Yourself
Younger children may not realise if you are being nervous or not confident, however adult learners will. By looking confident, they are more able to trust what you have to say and give their attention to your lectures. Practice lifting your chest, standing upright, gazing forward, and relaxing your arms. A postural change is a gateway to a mental change.
Offer Relevant Feedback
With children learners, you may be able to get by through giving simple feedback, such as ‘great job’ or ‘amazing work.’ However, adult learners appreciate it more if you could expand upon your feedback and maybe explain why you think their work is great or not great. By being able to do this, they can tell if you truly care about their work and if you really are a professional within your field.
Real-life Case Studies
Adult learners usually come with professional knowledge or experience from the past, so they may know of theories, but are most likely looking for your experience within your field. Therefore, sharing several case studies may pique their interest and be beneficial to them.
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