Do you find it increasingly difficult to maintain the attention of the parents-to-be in your childbirth classes? Do some couples start off enthusiastic, only to stop attending classes partway through the course?
If you’re currently facing these issues, or even if you just want to add a new component to your childbirth classes, try these suggestions for increasing attendance and engagement among your students.
With technology presently playing an integral role in most people’s lives, incorporating technology into your curriculum is critical. This is especially true with respect to your millennial students. Just be sure that technology is used to enhance instruction by making lessons more interactive and likely to lead to high levels of information retention. Technology is no replacement for effective instruction.
If you rely on lecture alone, you risk losing the attention of your expectant parents. Most of today’s younger people are accustomed to — and expect — varied, media-rich learning resources.
Think about using videos, PowerPoint presentations, class discussions and hands-on demonstrations to encourage participation and keep your audience both interested in and focused on the vital information you have to impart.
Offer Immediate Feedback
Demonstrate good engagement practices to your students by quickly providing support, encouragement and — where applicable — correction. Offering immediate feedback also reminds parents that their learning involves problem-solving. Use feedback to help students to identify (and respond to) moments of need and emphasize the ways in which your curriculum is relevant both to their current and future circumstances.
Create Small Group Exercises
Small group exercises are great for promoting collaborative learning. When students work with each other in a small group to further investigate and apply the material you've presented, they are more likely to share ideas, opinions, experiences, and concerns, making the learning environment more personal and responsive to their individual needs. Give your students opportunities to establish connections by working together and building positive relationships.
For additional ideas for increasing engagement, participation and attendance in your classes, refer to our other blog posts on boosting parent engagement.