A Little Autonomy Goes a Long Way

This post is a little after the fact, but it’s still something worth sharing.

On a Friday afternoon a week or two ago, I was teaching a Year 8 class in one of our after-lunch periods. As you can imagine, it’s not exactly the most productive time of the week for their learning but it’s often a nice chance to change the pace a bit.

On this particular day, however, we had their final exam coming up and so we didn’t really have the luxury to take things a bit more slowly. But one thing that did work really well was to change my approach a little – I gave them some autonomy about how the lesson went. Hardly radical, I know, but it really worked! I had a few activities for them to do but THEY got to choose the order in which they completed them. And considering it’s a very small thing and not very groundbreaking, they really enjoyed it! They relished the opportunity to make some choices about their learning and which task they wanted to tackle first. It was great!

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