I feel like the more I have been teaching, the more "active" students have become. They have a greater need for stimulation, and this only increases the amount of engagement we need to provide to keep them focused on their learning. Perhaps it's just me that feels that way or the class make-ups that I have had.
I had a college professor who made our learning so interactive. She had us outside doing simulations, using the outdoor environment in experiments, using simple hands-on materials, and modeling experiments. It is truly easiest for me to remember back to specific experiences in this class above any other. This has to be because of the hands-on explorations we continually investigated with because it was not my favorite class subject.
"When learning is active and hands-on, the formation of neural connections is facilitated and information is much more readily remembered than information learned from an abstract viewpoint, where the teacher is doing the work while students watch." (Gregory & Parry, 2006)
Something that my students really enjoyed was creating experiments with ramps and catapults to test a question. Then, they used their question, hypothesis, procedure, results, and conclusion to write a lab report as a type of informational writing (inspired by Lucy Calkins Units of Study). They loved building, creating, and testing!