Chapter 7

“You can make a child sit at his or her desk, but only the child can decide to learn. Engaging a student’s intrinsic motivation is the holy grail of academicians everywhere.”

– Julie Lindsay and Vicki Davis in Flattening Classrooms, Engaging Minds

Choice is such a powerful concept yet something that is so often lacking in schools (for both teachers and students). What do you do to create opportunities for student choice in your classroom? How do you foster opportunities for students to build, invent, question, or have meaning?

In this chapter, Julie and Vicki offer many structures and suggestions for how to give students choice in the classroom. What have you already tried that you’ve found successful? Where do you find challenges?

5 thoughts on “Chapter 7

  1. Pingback: Meeting #4 of Virtual Book Club – Add Your Voice! | Virtual Book Club

  2. Pingback: Meeting #4 of Virtual Book Club – Add Your Voice! « The Global Classroom Project

  3. I love providing choice to my students. It is one of the most powerful motivators you can provide students. I share the following two true stories of choice:

    Last year the two grade 6 classes were preparing for their assembly. They choose how to break it down and who was going to do what. We had two boys who did chose to present a summary of “Hannah’s Suitcase.”* We told all the class that it doesn’t matter what presentation method they used but that they had to discuss it with us to see what should be included and what should be the markers for success. The students decided to choose movies. Early on they were asking the teachers to ask other students to help them to be different characters. We flat out refused and told them they had to do it. As the projects progressed they gained more confidence in asking others to help them. This group also went above and beyond what we were expecting and produced a truly wonderful piece of work.

    The other story involves two different students. One student chose to make a movie about a charity using copyrighted work. It was a beautiful movie and I wanted to put it online. Another student made a PP and created his own music to play underneath an emotionally important part of his speech (I swear I did not teach him emotional manipulation). Both were given the opportunity to represent their knowledge in this manner and both did a stellar job. With the permission of the parents I took their work combined it and put it online for other people to see. I was very proud of them.

    Here is the video:

  4. Pingback: Offering Choices – for Teachers and Students | Virtual Book Club

  5. Pingback: Offering Choices – for Students and Teachers | The Global Classroom Project

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