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Tips to Help Shy Students

written by: Julia Bodeeb • edited by: Wendy Finn • updated: 8/2/2012

Some students need a little nudge to get more involved in school activities and make new friends. This article provides some ideas to help teachers motivate shy students to participate more and socialize more readily.

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    Bring Out Each Student's Personality

    Shy students sometimes need encouragement to make the most of their high schools years. Some students are far too withdrawn and keep to themselves while at school. They may be traumatized from some life event or they may just feel uncomfortable socializing. There are many ways a teacher may reach out to the shy student to encourage them to get involved in school activities.

    Make Announcements About Upcoming School Events

    Make an announcement to the class frequently about upcoming school events. If you will attend, the event let students know you will award extra credit if they attend the event and write a description of it. Some students feel safer joining in after-school events if they know a teacher will be present and they can sit with class members.

    Talk to the Shy Students About the Importance of Friends

    If you notice that a shy student is always alone when seen around school take them out to the hall one day in class to talk about the importance of friends. Teenagers sometimes isolate themselves when they are in a crisis. Family problems cause many teenagers to withdraw from the social scene at school.So speak to the shy student and ask if everything is okay.Encourage them to participate more in socializing at school events and to work to make new friends during the school year.

    Encourage Students to Join Group Activities

    Activities like the chorus and band where students work together help shy students make new friends. So speak with students who are shy and prompt them to join these activities or other activities like Pep Club or Key Club where students interact during activities.

    Talk About the Link Between Extracurricular Activities and Scholarships

    Encourage students to join activities by informing them that many scholarship applications require students to list their extracurricular activities. Colleges and scholarship committees like to give awards to students who do more than just earn high grades. Involvement in school activities gives students an edge in obtaining scholarships.

    Ask shy students periodically if they are involved in activities and remind them of the importance of being able to list activities on scholarship applications.

    Attend School Sporting Events

    Be a familiar face at school sporting events.Shy students are more likely to attend events and mingle with their peers if they see their teachers there and thus know they won’t be wandering around feeling alone at the event. Tell students if you will attend a game at the school that day. Help shy students come out to school events and get to know their peers.