Focus Forms

  • Situation

    I have some students who have a difficult time attending during longer teacher/student discussions. They are playing with items in their desks, talking to other students, doodling, or looking around. What can I do to help them focus longer on the topic at hand?

  • Summary

    Explore using a Focus Form – one example is a list of student names in one column and a column to check off next to the name. Tell your student that you need help remembering if you called on each of these students. Would he/she please make a check each time one of these students is called upon? Another example is to make a column of the vocabulary or key words being used during the discussion and a check-off column next to each word. Ask the student to check off when he/she hears the vocabulary words during the lesson to make sure you cover all the concepts.

  • Definition

    Focus Form refers to an engagement activity to aid students who have difficulty focusing and attending during longer teacher/student discussions or teacher directed instruction times.

  • Quick Facts

    • Child's Age: 6-10, 11-13, 14-17
    • Planning Effort: Moderate
    • Difficulty Level: Easy
  • Pre-requisites

    ability to read simple sight words

  • Process

    1. Decide on a type of Focus Form to be used. (vocabulary words, student names, key concept words)

    2. Create an easy form with the items in a left column and a check-off column on the right of each item.

    3. Ask the student to assist you with your instruction by completing the form during the instructional time.

    4. *Note – One teacher created a form of key words for every student in her class to use and check when she uses the word

  • Documents and Related Resources

    Focus Forms Sample 1 (Word document)


    focus form sample 1 (PDF)


    Focus Forms Sample 2 (Word document)


    focus form sample 2 (PDF)


    If you have questions or concerns about the Watson Institute’s use of this information, please contact us.