Learning Lab Reflection

Chalkie White soaking in the springtime sunshine! (because sometimes you just need a cat photo)

Learning Lab Reflections

The question driving my inquiry this year was: How does increased opportunities for student voice and choice lead to self-direction and making good choices? While I struggled coming up with, and revising this question throughout the year, it kept me on the right path. I have always valued the middle level philosophy emphasis on student choice and voice, and believe it is at the heart of student motivation. I hope to spark the light of self-motivation in these students, but that’s a tricky thing… so self-direction has become a measure of motivation- to some degree, and maybe I’ll tackle motivation next year! Overall, students who were excited about the topics they chose, were self-directed and motivated to learn. Helping them make good choices was more difficult, but became easier as I learned more about my students. Again, middle level philosophy wins with relationship building- the only way to really know your students and help steer them in the right direction to make good choices, is to build relationships.

My video reflection…

https://drive.google.com/file/d/10rAycGl14uAwdx5StCtog5w8t7QDfxwl/view?usp=sharing

How did the year finish?

  • Final Unit: “Choose your own path!” 3 Options:
    • Inquiry path
    • Social Justice (Global/Local Issues) path
    • Guided path, using Geography Alive!
  • Using the Schoology student completion tool, students will navigate their way through the final unit through one of the 3 paths. The first 2 are mostly self-directed, and the third is more structured for those that want or need more guidance. I’m hoping that students will be better at self-direction after practice this year, and that they make good choices so they stay engaged in the learning through the very end of the year!
  • The Destinations or Final Products for each path-
Inquiry path-

Final Products: 

  • Create a Project/Presentation & Present to your class
  • 3-5 page Report/Informational Writing
  • Bibliography
Social Justice (Global/Local Issues) path-

Final Products:

  • Create a Project/website to share information & CALL YOUR AUDIENCE TO ACTION
  • 3-5 page Persuasive Essay/Argument Writing
  • Bibliography
 

Guided path, using Geography Alive!

Final Products:

  • Textbook work
  • Further your learning (mini-inquiry) project & Presentation. Include:
    • What did you learn in the chapter?
    • What did you research beyond the textbook?
    • Bibliography
  • Students have sequential assignments to submit before they can move on, so there are no specific due dates, but rather checkpoints that they have to fulfill. (ie- Inquiry questions, evidence of taking notes, etc.)
  • I will also add weekly “Pit-Stops” or exit ticket-type assignments to share with me where they are, and what supports they need from me so that I can see where each student is in the process as we move toward the real-world deadline of… the end of the school year!
    • Feedback from the Culture project showed me that students enjoy the “Pit-Stops” because feedback makes them they feel they are on the right track when doing an independent project.
    • I found they were hugely helpful in keeping track of many working parts!
  • On the guided path, students will either work in a small group with me leading them, or on their own following the teacher’s procedures and checking in with me.
  • Want to the see the circus unfold? Stop by for a last-minute LL visit!

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