Yesterday students answered the question, "What do you want to learn about?" Then they eagerly shared topics of interest.
The list was long and varied. Right away, we were able to weave many of the topics into our upcoming study units. For example, many students wanted to study clay sculpture, and we're able to weave that into our endangered species presentations. Another student wanted to study dinosaurs, and we started that study yesterday as part of our endangered species preview work. Others wanted to study programming which will push me to review that topic over the vacation so that I can facilitate their investigation during the final weeks of the school year.
Today, I'll build on yesterday's discussion, with a short meeting about "leading your learning." We'll take another look at yesterday's list, and then discuss ways that we can build knowledge in those areas both in and out of school.
Then, the day's schedule will give students a chance to "lead their learning" in the following ways:
- Tech Workshop: Choosing tools that bring your closer to your learning goals and interests.
- Informational Text Groups: Reading and discussing text together to learn and build foundation for independent study.
- Reading Workshop: Choosing books that you enjoy and/or satisfy your learning quests.
- Fraction Bars Project: Choosing the place, people, pace and process to complete the math project.
Leading your learning in fourth grade is an activity that provides choice and voice during daily learning units. It is also an ongoing conversation between teacher and student related to a child's interests, academic needs and style which results in a responsive learning environment.