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Thursday, February 11, 2016

Student Powered Teaching/Learning Environments

Last night's TLI webinar focused, in part, on teacher powered schools. This morning I'm thinking about how I can foster a student-powered learning environment.

There are many constructs I currently use or can use to create this kind of environment including the following:

Listening
It's important that I make time to listen carefully to students' words, needs, interests, and desires. Generally the beginning of the day, recess, lunch, and the end of the day are good times for this.

Response
It's similarly important to respond regularly to students' needs. When you respond in words and/or actions, students know they are heard.

Opportunities for Student Leadership
As much as possible, it's important to let students lead the classroom. Students may lead by completing jobs, making decisions, and through advocacy at class team meetings.

Welcoming and Inviting Learning Environment and Routine
Work with students to create an inviting learning environment and daily routine.

Choice
As much as possible provide students with the opportunity to make choices about their learning.

Teach to Students' Strengths
Maximize students' strengths and interests as you teach.

There are many ways that we can serve students well through empowerment. I'm sure I'll have more to add to this list as I think more on the subject in days ahead.