Creating or finding activities that are hands-on, allows students to demonstrate their creative side, allows for collaboration, and that appeals to students' interests is a strategy teachers can use to increase engagement and achievement in the classroom. Where I teach we are continually creating activities based on the students' needs, the students' interests, and of course, the state standards. Click here if you'd like to see some of the activities I've created and used in my classroom!
You certainly don't have to rely on creating activities in order to increase your students' engagement, as there are thousands of activities out there that are already made! Do any Google search on a topic you're studying, along with your grade level, and you can find a wealth of activities, many of them free!