Using lesson hooks are a great way to create engaging lessons. A lesson hook is a short opening to a lesson. It should grab your students’ attention and leave them wanting to learn more. Hooks should be short (less than 3 minutes) and prepare students for the content they will be learning.
Using lesson hooks are a great way to create engaging lessons. I have compiled a list of the Five Lesson Hook categories that I have found useful. Although they are listed as hooks, the ideas are also great ideas for creating entire lessons. Here they are, in no particular order.
If you have worked with elementary kids for any length of time, you know they get antsy and need a lot of stimulation. The movement hook is perfect for getting your students out of their seat and excited about what is to come. Here are some ideas for adding movement to your lesson.
- Get up and act something out.
- Include gestures and motions for students to do at their desk.
- Throw, roll, or catch something.
- Turn the room into an opinion meter.
- Set up four corners of the room for students to move based on statements.
- Change the lesson from a seated activity to a walking activity.
Set the Stage Hook
Any break from the ordinary can be exciting. Change your learning setting to get students engaged and excited for what’s to come.
- Transform your classroom to create a certain atmosphere.
- Take your lesson outside the classroom to a new location.
- Decorate the room to fit your lesson.
- Rearrange, add, or remove desks.
- Change the lighting for a different mood.
The Silent Hook
Silence can be very powerful, and this lesson hook is no exception. The silent hook is a nice refrain from the noise and craziness of a typical day.
- Show something to spark interest.
- Use written or secret messages.
- Play Pictionary, charades, or hangman.
- Bring items in a bag that pertain to the lesson. Show one at a time.
The detective hook is sure to get your students engaged and excited about learning. Although it usually requires a little more planning, the results are always worth it. If you don’t have time to create something yourself, find something ready online.
- Create a mystery or problem that students have to solve.
- Use clues that students have to solve or decode.
- Create a map or clues for a scavenger hunt.
- Assign roles based on a fictional character.
- Make the lessons a daring mission to be completed.
Pop Culture Hook
This hook is especially great for engaging older kids, although all kids love it. Take the game shows, apps, video games, etc. that are popular and put an educational spin on it! Here are some ideas.
- Create a challenge based on a reality TV show like Survivor, The Amazing Race, Family Feud, Fear Factor, etc.
- Make your own or have students create a short video clip like TicTok.
- Introduce the lesson like a social media post or story.
- Use apps for the phone or iPad to create or present information.
I hope this list has given you some lesson hooks or lesson ideas to incorporate into your classroom today. What are your favorite lesson hooks? Leave a comment with one of your favorites!