Creative Teaching Techniques


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a)        A systematic Merit-Demerit Chart

          Unlike traditionally practised merit/demerit charts in the classroom, a teacher is          supposed to design an interesting chart that helps in classroom management. A sample      could be like this. A separate piece of paper containing criteria has to be pasted beside         the merit-demerit chart.


No. of stars
Criteria (evaluation at your convenience)
discipline at home/school or everywhere
studies (on the basis of term results or classroom performance)
regularity to school (weekly or monthly attendance record)
completion of assignment/active participation in ECAs/initiatives


Merits (stars in green ink)
Demerits (stars in red ink )

In case your students collect a certain number of merits, your students are entitled to claim one of the following items from the store room/office/school canteen/classroom.


required no. of merits
a novel/storybook/magazine worth Rs 200
colour pencil/sketch pens/geometry box worth Rs 150
chocolates/chart papers/ pens/ glitter pens
pencils/ book wrappers/ exercise books/

b) Passing the Objects

If a teacher himself/herself chooses a student to answer his or her question in class, the teacher is practicing a teacher-centred traditional approach. So, teachers are expected to call out a student’s roll no. promptly first. After the student does his or her part, the teacher should encourage the student to pass any classroom objects such as chalks, markers, dusters, pens to another student of his or her choice for an interesting practice.


c) Use of Symbolic Correction Technique

Underlining wrong words, sentences, paragraphs in red ink and overwriting correct answers in students’ exercise books kills students’ creativity and makes the pages of exercise books colourful. It rather looks ugly. A creative teacher himself/herself works less but makes students work harder and produces outstanding results every term. Take a look at the sample table below.

If a teacher is happy with the presentation of work
If a spelling is wrong
If a word order is not correct
If grammar is wrong
If the tense of a sentence is incorrect

A sample text-

One of my schoolmets (SP) phoned me last night. He had phoned me at around 8 pm when I was eating my dinner.                                                          (WG)

The correct one- One of my schoolmates phoned me last night. He had phoned me when I was eating my dinner. Or, one of my schoolmates phoned me last night. He phoned me at around 8 pm when I was eating my dinner. (Simple past takes definite time expressions such as today, yesterday, yesterday evening, last month etc. But past perfect takes indefinite time adverbs such as already, just, hardly etc.)

So, a teacher’s role is to pinpoint their mistakes for guidance. If you correct the answer, you’re leading your students.

d) Match-Stick Pictures

If you don’t have access to touch board screens or smart boards in your classrooms, for effective teaching you are required to make proper use of your creativity and the whiteboards/blackboards. You can simply draw match-stick pictures on the board which on the one hand reinforces teaching and on the other hand it injects a little entertainment into class.

Hi! Guys, this is Paul from Paris. I speak French and English. Can you speak French, eh? I think I’m the most handsome guy in the world, aren’t I? (humourous)


e) Word of the Day/Thought of the Day

A good teacher always makes his/her students curious for something new every day. A class teacher rather than subject teachers can start classes writing Word of the Day/Thought of the Day. If the teacher writes word of the day in the first lesson, students need to write as many words as they can by adding suffixes and prefixes. Also, they should write parts of speech. In the case of Thought of the Day, students need to elaborate on the thought.

For example, Word of the Day= ‘illustration’

illustrate= verb, illustrative=adjective, illustrator=noun (person), illustrious=adjective


f) Commitment Papers

Until and unless your students are attentive in class, no matter what techniques you apply doesn’t work. So one of the good techniques to stop students from misbehaving, you’ve got to print out commitment papers and ask them to put their signatures so that you can emotionally blackmail them. It can be a legal threat to them. It’s applicable to those students who belong to age group 10 to 14 years. A bit of strictness and rudeness isn’t that harmful.


g) Records of Students’ Profiles

Keeping records of students’ profiles helps a teacher study students’ family backgrounds, hereditary illness, contact address, likes and dislikes, academic status for comparison and future plans. So, records related to students’ all aspects are a must.


h) Identification of Students’ Personality

The students you teach weren’t born on the same day, at the same time and same place. They don’t possess same talent and quality either. Human brains have four parts: top left, bottom left, top right and bottom right. The students who use top left part of the brain most are very good at memorization. They can pursue their careers in medicine, engineering etc. On the other hand, students who use top right part of the brain cannot be compared with the one who uses the top left part of the brain. Every student has a personality by birth. It’s a teacher’s sole responsibility to nurture their talents and help them cultivate their own talents. Dividing students into four categories, giving them different sets of problems, question papers, project work and introducing different approaches in class are what a good teacher always does at school.


i) Quiz Contest in Class

In general, a quiz contest is understood to be a test of knowledge in a particular subject like sports, medicine, history, geography, politics etc. In order to make your students good at your subject, you can conduct indoor quiz contest of your subject but before promotional or annual examinations, questions from all subjects must be asked.


j) Innovation in Test Papers

Why can’t you do the same thing differently? Is it mandatory to write only Ram when you write a story? Is it mandatory to make students write essays on school, discipline, child rights, my aim, my family and so on. Let’s think of something that is beyond the horizon. Some students grow nervous as soon as they receive question papers during exams. If your question paper provokes some laughter, it will definitely help them overcome nervousness and do well in exams. Students’ names, their works of art, some animated pictures, and teachers’ creations can be entailed in question papers to relieve students’ anxiety. We teachers are to help them get ideas from others’ work. Contrarily, we are trying our students to be an imitator and attain full marks.


k) Exchange and Visitation Programs

A teacher’s clothing, regular presence and similar trend of teaching might indirectly impact on students’ outlook on teachers and their learning. Do you eat same kind of food every day? Of course, not. So, everyone expects new things every day. Besides a wide range of techniques in class, there can be a sudden change in the routine of teachers. If a visiting teacher enters your classroom, whole period your students don’t feel bored. You can go to your colleagues’ or friends’ school as a visiting faculty and so can they. If there is a disruptive student who usually gets on your nerves, you’d better establish a good rapport with him/her. If you contact his/her parents and pay him/her a few informal visits. The student doesn’t dare to breach any of classroom rules in your lesson or presence. Your relation with the particular child’s parents makes him/her feel uncomfortable while punishing.


l) Circle Time

Once a week or every fortnight, keep away your regular lessons, textbooks and exercise books. Just take your students somewhere out of the monotonous classroom. (I mean they sit in the same classroom, so they feel bored to be there.) Don’t let them know in advance where or why they are outside. They should be surprised. Choose a student to say a number. They can choose one number among 1, 2, and 3. You should have already written down the no. and topics. Topics could be debate, singing, cracking jokes, storytelling, sharing personal feelings, views on politics, history etc. After the circle time is over, they can be assigned a report on what they’ve done in circle time. It is an outlet to their personal sharing.



m) Small Scale Survey/Research

Concept of small scale research or survey should be started right at the tender age. As far as possible, students should be encouraged to carry out small scale survey/research on what are good facilities in a school, what are good qualities of a good student/teacher, how many students are vegetarian and non-vegetarian, how many like football, cricket, etc. Results should be announced in the assembly.


n) Choosing Motivating Topics

Force-feeding is likely to misfire. So, either do a survey or study students’ mentality about which chapter they are interested in. If you teach the chapter that students think is mundane. You may not be able to grab their attention. And all your effort goes in vain.


o) Step-by-Step Explanation

Long texts, paragraphs or passages affect students’ readability. Start teaching with small bits of text such as word clues, titles and subtitles, important lines, difficult vocabularies. Line by line explanation is like a maze for students. They get lost. Therefore, at the end of the class, a short summary makes them clear. There are many students who prefer lecture methods. But cross-questions, humours, movements of students are important in the middle of the lesson. If you’re teaching very young children or using handouts, please choose the text of moderate size with pictures or illustrations.


p) Prompt Decisions

As a class teacher or a subject teacher, you may have to cope with many confrontations, intellectual conflicts or disagreements among students. Whatever the case is, don’t let it be pending. You will lose their trust upon you. They won’t come to you for a second time seeking your help. Take the case and settle it to win their approval and credibility. This is a golden opportunity to show your leadership skills.


q) Students as Teachers

Your students are future nation builders. Why not give them a chance to enhance their potentiality? Sometimes, when there is a time to teach short and easy chapters, pick out a couple of smart students. Take them to the staff room or whenever they’re free, sit with them. Teach them how to teach the particular chapter in class being a teacher. Their ideas and your ideas should be merged. Let your students have a wonderful experience. Next time, other new students should be given chances.


r) Target Students

It is a human tendency that average or weak students anywhere are usually overlooked. For instance, when you watch a live football match, the scorer is highlighted but the one who makes such a beautiful pass is overshadowed. Is football an individual game? Of course, not. In teaching, competitions are for talented ones. What about those who are struggling to pass each term? Don’t they expect to be part of such platforms? It is you intellectual personality, teachers. You’ve to organize either outdoor or indoor pursuits to uplift the academic standards of average as well as struggling students. Then you’ll be a great teacher!


s) Prizes/Awards

Despite activities in class, some students remain passive. Why? Who are responsible for it? It’s none other than you teachers yourselves. Our students, especially young participants expect something as a prize. We teachers promise prizes, but with the passing of time, it is faded. But our students remember it. Next time they hesitate to partake in activities we organize. Let’s not dash young ones’ hopes. Ultimately, it affects our objectives.


Humour in class

A teacher himself/herself should possess a sense of humour. In order to inject enthusiasm into classrooms, multimedia is a must. If multimedia is not accessible, teachers can provoke laughter in students by cracking jokes, displaying caricatures and showing funny snapshots. A teacher has to be imaginative.






Reinforcements in teaching are award and punishment practices. Both practices are intended for the enhancement of teaching and learning. If we look back, most of our teachers all over the world practised negative reinforcements to keep students in their grips. Of negative reinforcements, corporal punishment was dominant. It was widely used. Times have changed. Today, it is strictly prohibited in most of the countries. But the selection between positive reinforcements and negative reinforcements is still debatable. In my opinion, the first one overlaps the latter. The latter brings instant and momentary change. But the first one is steady and gradual which brings lifelong change in students. It’s the time of guiding not leading. In the past students were led, but today they are guided. Some of the reinforcements are as follows:

Positive Reinforcements:

  • Verbal praise
  • Stickers
  • Certificates
  • Appreciative notes to parents
  • Tangibles/edibles
  • Stamps
  • Positive notes on work
  • Free time for fun
  • First to Leave
  • Extra responsibilities
  • Greeting Cards
  • Green Cards Provisions (Appreciation)

Negative Reinforcements:


—  Sit out at the back of class

—  Send to buddy class

—  Write out the rules

—  Lunch detention

—  Send to time-out room

—  Verbal reprimand

—  Send to DI/Co-ordinator

—  Change seating position

—  Call to parents

—  Withdrawal of privileges

—  Overstay at school

—  Deprivation of activities

—  Overload of assignments

—  Yellow card provision(as a warning)


Vocabulary Test

Group A

acuity                                       fecund

delineate                                    fiat

depraved                                    figment

emend                                       garner

enervate                                    hallow


From the words in Group A and Group B following. Choose the one that most nearly corresponds to each definition below. Write the word in the space.

a.    (v.) to portray, sketch, or describe in accurate and vivid detail; to represent pictorially ________________

b.    (v.) to set apart as holy or sacred, sanctify, consecrate; to honour greatly, revere _______________

c.    (n.) to correct; to alter to serve a new or different purpose

d.    (n.) a fabrication of the mind; an arbitrary notion just a

e.    (n.) an arbitrary order or decree; a command or act of will or consciousness ­­­­­­­_________

f.     (adj.) intended for or understood by only a select few, private, secret ________

g.    (n.) sharpness (particularly of the mind or senses) _________

h.    (v.) to acquire as the result of effort; to gather and store away, as for future use _________

i.      (adj.) fruitful in offspring or vegetation; intellectually productive ____________

j.     (v.) to weaken, lessen the mental, moral, or physical vigor of, enfeeble, hamstring ________

k.    (adj.) brought to a state of evil and corruption, devoid __________

Group B


idiosyncrasy                      penchant

ignominy                          reputed

malediction                       sophistry

mundane                          sumptuous

nuance                                       ubiquitous




a)    (adj.) earthly, worldly, relating to practical and material affairs; concerned       with what is ordinary __________

b)   (n.) a strong attraction or inclination __________

c)    (adj.) present or existing everywhere __________

d)    (adj.) according to reputation or general belief; having widespread acceptance and good reputation ___________

e)    (n.) a curse, expression of hatred and condemnation _________

f)     (n.) conceited, presumptuous; excessive, immoderate _________

g)    (n.) reasoning that seems  plausible but is actually unsound; a fallacy________

h)    (n.) a subtle or slight variation (as in colour, meaning, quality), delicate gradation or shade of difference _________

i)     (adj.) costly, rich, magnificent ____________

j)     (n.) shame and disgrace ___________

k)    (n.) a peculiarity that serves to distinguish or identify ________




Group C

                   Word Power

                   Whatever your personality type, you’ll win friends and influence people with a                     good vocabulary. See which of these words related to character you can define—                         and perhaps which defines you—and then analyze the next page for answers.                           Tick the best option.

                                         i.    cravan                                  

a) reckless       b) fussy        c) cowardly

                                       ii.    picaresque              

a)like a daring rascal    b) good looking       c) standoffish

                                      iii.    recluse

a) group leader        b) hermit       c) problem solver

                                      iv.    narcissist

a) generous giver     b) self-absorbed sort          c) analytical type

                                        v.    ingratiate

a) eat impulsively     b) attempt to control                   c) try to gain favour

                                      vi.    acolyte

a) follower              b) braggart                       c) daredevil

                                    vii.    bon vivant

a) good listener        b) trusted ally          c) lover of fine dining

                                   viii.    sanguine

a) optimistic            b) melancholy                   c)shy

                                      ix.    choleric

a) logical                 b) health-conscious            c) hot-tempered

                                        x.    congenial

a) unreliable            b) given to gossip              c) friendly

                                      xi.    bloviate

a) get angry            b) rant pompously    c) commit petty crimes

                                    xii.    venal

a) virtuous              b) corruptible           c) interfering

                                   xiii.    bumptious

a) pushy                 b) countrified           c) roly-poly

                                   xiv.    altruistic

a) honest                b) kind to others      c) quick to change

                                     xv.    bohemian

a) machoguy           b)nonconformist       c) picker of arguments

(for answers, you are requested to consult a dictionary. Or, you can also contact the writer via email.)




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