Empowering Student Voice Post Distance Learning
by Brianna Richard, on Jul 28, 2021 10:37:36 AM
The summer is quickly drawing to a close and students are eagerly awaiting to return to the classroom. Students across America are in varying learning predicaments. Some bounced back and forth between distance learning and in-person learning while others remained in distance learning the entire year. With so many varying levels, now more than ever is the time to focus on student achievement and reversing learning loss. Promoting student’s voices and empowering students in the classroom is an effective way to promote student achievement and create an awesome classroom culture. Here are 4 ways to make it happen.
Let Students Make the Rules
The beginning of the year is all about rules and procedures. It is also a wonderful opportunity to let students lead the discussion on rules and come up with their own. Encouraging students to come up with the rules will give them a sense of ownership in the classroom and create an environment that is collaborative.
Between taking attendance, collecting homework, and getting everyone in the door, mornings in the classroom can be a chaotic time. Having a morning meeting can ease student anxiety and build relationships amongst students and teachers. I like to give my students a few minutes to turn and talk to a partner and allow them to share what is on their minds. Starting the day off encouraging student voices instead of focusing on routines and procedures makes students feel like a priority and have a place where they are free to share their feelings.
Encourage Students to Share About Themselves
Asking students to share information about themselves, what they like, and who they are outside the classroom cultivates a classroom environment in which students feel like they belong. While discussing a classroom novel or topic in history class, have students relate the material to their lives. Allow them to share and connect to the classroom content in a personal way.
Encourage Student Feedback
Students love giving feedback, and they love it even more when teachers take their thoughts and turn them into a reality! Students want to feel like their opinions and insights are valued. A simple box for student feedback is a great way for anonymous way for students to use their voice.
When we encourage students to speak up and create an environment where they feel heard, students can transform from a bystander to the initiator that takes ownership of learning. What are some other ways you encourage your student’s voice? Leave a comment below!