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5 Ways to Give Your Students More Voice and Choice

5 Ways to Give Your Students More Voice and Choice
The idea of co-constructing knowledge with students can be a scary thing for many of us teachers. The age-old role of teacher as orator, director, sage has been handed down for centuries and most of us grew up as students looking to teachers in this way. It's hard to shake. Co-constructing knowledge means giving up the myself and them role of teacher and students and fully embracing the wonder and journey of us. The first step we have to take is becoming familiar and comfortable with saying "I don't know" out loud to our students. Maybe that sounds silly, but it's a huge step for many of us. We all just sat there in the silence of those three words. Then I said, "Who knows something about this that they can share?" Two educational theorists who inform my thinking about co-constructing knowledge are Vygotsky and Freire. Yes, it is true that teachers need to be the ultimate decision-makers about a lot of things. In The Classroom #1) Stuff We Want to Know About #2) Task Force Teams of Inquiry Related:  Student Voice & ChoiceStudent VoiceTeaching

Giving Students a Voice in the Classroom - ASCD September 1996 | Volume 54 | Number 1 Creating a Climate for Learning Pages 22-26 The story of the dervish raises an important issue. The bystander, no doubt, expected the dervish to shout back something negative, a kind of verbal revenge. Most behavioral interventions involve some form of punishment or negative consequence, a manipulation designed to correct the offender's actions. Yet, we know that punishment does not work with many students, particularly those with low self-esteem (Jensen 1995, Glasser 1984). The repeat offenders in America's detention rooms are a daily confirmation of the failure of punishment. For those educators tired of writing the names of misbehaving students on the board, disenchanted with group punishments and rewards, and frustrated by escalating levels of detention time, a different way is bringing some success to both elementary and secondary classrooms. Change: The Big Picture We begin with how to set up a need-fulfilling classroom. Classroom Vignettes

Student Voice And Choice In Language Learning Volume 2, Issue 11, Number 5 Driving Question: How can student voice and choice enrich language learning? Recent articles in publications like The Atlantic and The Hill highlight what many describe as a dismal state of language learning in the United States. We can change this attitude and grow the number of students invested in language learning by changing perceptions about the value of global education in general. These four ideas can help teacher start building student voice and choice into language learning. 1. 2. 3. 4. All of these strategies have a similar theme: Keep it real. Meriwynn Mansori is Manager of Instructional Services at VIF International Education.

You Can’t Bounce Off the Walls If There Are No Walls: Outdoor Schools Make Kids Happier—and Smarter by David Sobel New approaches to kindergarten offer us a glimpse of what childhood used to be, and still could be—the modern re-creation of the children’s garden. If we looked to these examples, we might be able to rescue childhood. posted Mar 28, 2014 Photo by Vitalinka/Shutterstock. The original kindergarten—the children’s garden—conceived by German educator Friedrich Froebel in the 19th century, was a place where children learned through play, often in nature. That idea is fast eroding. Kindergarten is the new first grade. In the face of this indoor-ification of early childhood, a cultural and educational movement is emerging—focused on new approaches to nature-based education. The Children’s Garden The nature preschools and forest kindergartens of today aspire to this same kind of nature immersion. On a November day, I visit the Waldkindergarten on the Natick Community Organic Farm, outside of Boston. Isn’t this what we want for our children? School of Life Like what you're reading? More Stories

Home Page | Student Success Skills 10 Ways to Encourage Student Voice and Choice Personalize the Learning Environment Building a personalized learning environment means putting the learner first. Here are ten steps to encourage student voice and choice in your classroom. 1. Introduce the topic and share the standards that are normally met with typical instruction. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. Barbara Bray (@bbray27) has over 23 years experience "Making Learning Personal", writes the professional development column for Computer Using Educators (CUE) since 1998, is a Creative Learning Strategist where she is Rethinking Learning, and is owner of My eCoach. Kathleen McClaskey (@khmmc), President and Digital Learning Consultant of EdTech Associates, has over 28 years experience in designing instruction and learning environments for all learners and in developing professional development programs and projects using the Universal Design for Learning framework. Popular Topics Advertisement What can your students create?

Student Choice Leads to Student Voice The way I understood school learning shifted the first time I was given an opportunity to design a project of my own. This high school senior project, an environmental audit of my school district, became my passion. I stayed awake at night researching, met with different experts, and ultimately presented a proposal for reform to our school board. Why Choice? Learning that incorporates student choice provides a pathway for students to fully, genuinely invest themselves in quality work that matters. There are times when students are able to pursue their passions and independently create projects, and other times when students can be given choice in smaller, yet meaningful, ways. Several of my colleagues at Science Leadership Academy in Philadelphia generously offered to share creative examples of different ways that they structure student choice in their classrooms: Meenoo Rami teaches students English: Brad Latimer teaches students math: Matt Kay teaches students English: A final example:

What’s Your Learning Disposition? How to Foster Students’ Mindsets Stanford psychologist Carol Dweck’s work on growth mindsets has dominated much of the attention around how students can influence their own learning. But there are other ways to help students tap into their own motivation, too. Here are a few other important mindsets to consider. Belonging to an academic community: Feeling connected to adults and peers at school intellectually, not just socially, through an academic community, is a strong motivator. Feeling a sense of belonging in an intellectual community helps students interpret setbacks as a natural part of learning, and not as a personal deficit that sets them apart. Belief in the likelihood of success: Students’ belief in their own self-efficacy is a better predictor of academic success than measured ability. The work has meaning and value: The brain naturally looks for connections. Schools can encourage students to develop these mindsets, but it requires an intentional focus. Related

9 Big Ideas within the Speaking and Listening Anchor Standards Every day or so, someone finds this website through searching some variation of “big ideas in the Common Core Speaking and Listening standards.” The problem is, an answer to that question isn’t currently easy to find on Teaching the Core! In order to try providing a better resource for that search, as well as for the sake of increasing my own understanding, here are 9 big ideas that I draw from the CCSS Speaking and Listening anchor standards. First of all, I’d like to share my insanely complex methods for creating this post. Intense, right? Now to the big ideas. I love that we’re talking about the Speaking and Listening standards rather than just the speaking standards. It is absolutely freaking certain that, if you don’t know how to listen, you don’t really know how to speak and you are not optimally prepared for college or career. If you’ve been doing think-pair-share in your classes, you’ve got this covered. Hold debates. Keyword: productive. Okay, that video might be irrelevant.

During our ideal learning environment discussions,... Student Engagement: Resource Roundup Facebook Edutopia on Facebook Twitter Edutopia on Twitter Google+ Pinterest Edutopia on Pinterest WHAT WORKS IN EDUCATION The George Lucas Educational Foundation Tips and Strategies for Keeping Students Engaged Igniting Student Engagement: A Roadmap for Learning, by John McCarthy (2015) McCarthy discusses key strategies to ensure student engagement including being authentic, introducing units with meaningful launch events, and letting students know what outcomes to expect. Back to Top Engagement Through Projects Integrated Learning: One Project, Several Disciplines, by Edutopia Staff (2015) For any project within a vocational major, High Tech High encourages teachers and students to include relevant content from other subject areas to enhance real-world connections. Engagement Through Technology Engagement Through Social and Emotional Learning Getting (and Keeping) Students Engaged Create experiences so students invest in their learning.