I know others have previously blogged about offering choice to our students and how important that is to their learning. I couldn’t agree more. In my classroom, I try to offer choice in both the content the students are learning and the product they use to share their learning whenever possible. Recently, my students were asked to show their understanding of conflict. Some chose to draw, others chose to write and some to perform a skit. Some students chose to work independently, others collaboratively. When I asked the students to reflect on the assignment one student wrote,
“The thing I liked best about the assignment was that there weren't very specific directions. It gave us a chance to show what we knew in our own way.” (Morgan)
In fact, I think even adults benefit when offered choices. Today, the teachers in district 68 participated in an institute day and we were offered choice. Teachers from within the district and outside the district presented sessions on a variety of topics all focused on the theme of empowering our students. Some sessions included using technology, others reading or math strategies, to name just a few. We were even given the choice to collaborate and reflect with colleagues. All of us were allowed to choose which sessions best met our needs for professional development.
I believe offering choice is one of the best ways to empower our students. As an adult learner I too felt empowered today by choosing my own learning.
This is a sampling of the sessions we were offered today.