This past weekend at CEA, I taught a new Master Educator class, Mission Possible: Light the Fuse. The class is all about finding ways to inspire and motivate our students. To do this, we must create an environment in which students can become motivated. One of the ways to do this is to make education fun!
We need to create a fun environment for our students. This doesn’t mean that everything should be a game or party, but our schools should be a place where students come and enjoy themselves. If it is serious all the time, you are going to lose them. It must be a place where they can have some fun if they are to become motivated.
One thing we often struggle with in school is down time in the student salon. When students are not with a client or working on a task, they become bored and that is when problems occur. Cell phones come out. They spend too much time in the break room. They leave to go get an afternoon coffee… and then don’t come back. You know how it is. Downtime creates problems.
As educators, we need to find ways to fill that downtime. Rather than simply telling students to work on their state board sets or in their workbook (not that there is anything wrong with that), have various things planned that will give them direction during downtime.
Here are a few ideas that you can incorporate:
- Have a video ready for them to watch, followed by a series of questions to answer.
- Prepare a mini class that you teach multiple times throughout the day.
- Have a specific hairstyle, makeup application or nail art project for them to complete.
- Have links to two or three blog articles for them to go and read.
- Encourage them to seek out various industry professionals on Instagram and follow them for the day, reporting back to you what they have learned.
The key is to think outside of the box on various assignments. Change it up and make it different, so they are excited to perform them. There is nothing wrong with occasionally tossing in state board preparation into the mix, it is only when that is every day’ s assignment that it becomes boring.
And I want to challenge you to have some activities that have nothing to do with education and are simply there as energizers and team building activities.
Think along the lines of:
- Mannequin head bowling
- Dance Party
- Clinic Karaoke
- Lip Sync Battle
You might be thinking “seriously a lip sync battle? “and I would say “YES, a lip synch battle!” You won’t believe how much fun students would have with it and the energy that it will bring into your school is off the chart. It doesn’t have to take more than 15 minutes of your time in the student salon and students, staff and customers will have a ball.
I tried this out in our class at CEA and it was a blast! Everyone was up and singing and dancing and those who weren’t were sheering on those who were.
This activity in our class turned out to be more successful than I could have ever hoped for and everyone was talking about how much fun it was the next day. Keep in mind, that if you do this every day, it will lose its power, but break it out every now and then and you will have a ball.
We must find ways to engage our students during their downtime if we are to keep them motivated and inspired. Find relevant and fun activities that you can add to your class or student salon. This will go a long way in helping you create a positive learning environment, which in turn will create an environment where students can become motivated.