Teachers are constantly struggling to find new and creative ways to keep their students engaged.
In today’s ever-changing world, it simply isn’t enough to rely on reading, writing, and arithmetic to rule the classroom. Advancements in technology have opened up a whole new rule book for student engagement, but not every teacher is willing to see the advantages of changing up their teaching styles.
But Joe Dombrowski, or Mr. D, is leading the charge when it comes to finding ways to make learning fun so that kids will look forward to coming to school. And based on his kiddos' reactions, it’s easy to see that there’s something to Mr. D’s unorthodox approach to teaching.
You might recognize Mr. D from his now infamous video of a surprise April Fool’s spelling test that was “CHCHCH” to say the least.video-player-present
Before becoming a teacher, he was a volunteer counselor for five years at a summer camp for terminally ill children, which ultimately inspired him to make a career change.
Describing his personal teaching philosophy, Mr. D believes, “You have to make the educational experience fun and engaging.”
His unconventional methods help ensure that students aren’t only learning, but having fun while doing it.
He isn’t afraid to bring his own personality and sense of humor into the classroom.
In Mr. D’s classroom, every student is free to be who they are and embrace what makes them special.
He may choose to refer to his students as “nuggets,” but Mr. D also has a slew of nicknames for each individual student.
And if his morning routine is anything to go by, it’s safe to say that his classroom is LIT.video-player-present
Everything from recess...
...to picture day has its own unique twist.
Even cleaning up the classroom can be turned into a game.
Sometimes Mr. D's humor goes right over the kids' heads without them even realizing.
That's certainly one way to test your students' knowledge at the end of the year.
In Mr. D's classroom, everyone's a winner!
He often uses virtual escape rooms to help test the children's knowledge as they try their best to break out.
And productivity is rewarded with fun games and other activities, including completing their very own mannequin challenge.
Learning time is also divided by "brain breaks" or quick transitional activities used to get the kids out of their seats and moving.
By introducing Fitness Friday to his classroom, Mr. D is able to provide a break from learning that is also promoting healthy habits.
And another one of his initiatives, Lunchtime DJ, has helped promote positivity in the lunchroom and has helped improve lunchtime behaviors.
And Mr. D's teaching habits have started to affect the rest of the school. Just look at how the entire school exits the cafeteria.
He's even caught the eye of Ellen Degeneres, who recently had the unforgettable teacher on her show as a surprise guest.video-player-present
It's clear to see how Mr. D is changing the way we think of teaching for the better. To keep up with his antics, you can follow him on Twitter or Instagram. And while you're at it, don't forget to share the teaching stylings of Mr. D with other teachers to help inspire their own student engagement.