Addressing Decreasing Attention Spans in Students

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It’s getting harder and harder to get students’ attention in the classroom – and it’s not their fault! A combination of technology and information at the click of a button means that students are now accustomed to having constant access to entertainment and information, which makes sitting still and concentrating on one task very difficult. These habits can impact all aspects of a student’s life, from schoolwork to being fully present during conversations with friends and family. Researchers found that attention spans in school-aged children dropped from 12 seconds in the early 1970s to 8 seconds in the late 1990s. This decrease in attention spans has been linked to increased stimulation from TV, computer games, and smartphones. Rather than limiting or eliminating this modern technology from our children’s lives, we can use it to our advantage with these five tips for increasing attention spans in students of all ages and grade levels. Let us see why addressing decreasing attention spans in students is important.

Revamp their seating arrangement

According to a study done by the University of Salford, students who were allowed to choose their own seats had significantly higher rates of engagement and concentration than those who were not. If your students are struggling to pay attention, allow them to sit where they feel most comfortable.

Break down long assignments into small chunks

One way to address decreasing attention spans in students is to break down long assignments into small chunks. This will help them stay focused and avoid getting overwhelmed. Plus, it will help them see their progress and feel motivated to keep going.

Let them listen to music while they read

Listening to music while reading can help address decreasing attention spans in students by providing stimulating background noise. This can help students focus on the task at hand and avoid getting distracted. Additionally, music can improve mood and increase motivation, both of which are important for students who may be struggling with attention span issues.

Give them choices

When it comes to addressing decreasing attention spans in students, one of the best things you can do is give them choices. This could mean letting them choose which assignment to do first, what seat they want to sit in, or what activity they want to do during break. Giving students choices allows them to feel more in control of their learning, which can help increase their focus and attention.

Encourage Movement During Class

Many experts believe that a major reason for decreasing attention spans is the lack of movement during the school day. Our brains are designed to pay attention when we are physically active, so it makes sense that adding some movement into the classroom would help students focus. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

-Have students stand up and stretch or do some simple exercises during class transitions.

-Make short videos or create PowerPoint presentations with built-in movement breaks.

Organize Positive Group Activities

When students are working together on a project, they are more likely to pay attention and stay engaged. This is because they feel like they are a part of something larger and are more invested in the outcome. Plus, positive group activities can be fun and help build friendships.

10 thoughts on “Addressing Decreasing Attention Spans in Students”

  1. This is an interesting topic, but the listening to music part while studying is what I have a problem with. I think this will be a form of distraction to the students. Please, I need different views on this. Thanks.

    1. I understand where you are coming from. I use to exercise such fear before, but research has shown that cool background music may improve focus on a task by providing motivation and improving mood. The music shouldn’t be loud.

  2. We students are fully engaged, their attention span in classrooms will increase. It is good to use technology, but when technology is not properly, this could also cause decrease in attention span of students.

  3. I think teachers can leverage on the use of technology to create a rich engagement in the classrooms. When students are gainfully engaged during lessons, they will not be distracted and they will be to learn and gain new information.

  4. A nice article. One thing about this article is that the writer identified causes of attention span. And according to the write up, technology is the main agent. But, I also see the same technology as the way out of the problem. If teachers can stop lecturing and try to create meaningful engagements through technology,the problem will be solved.

  5. I am very convinced now and I think I will encourage Interested students who like cool music in the background when reading to go ahead if it will boost their attention span.

    This is very insightful sir, keep up the good work

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