Wednesday, August 22, 2012

A Student Voice: Freedom to Choose a Learning Path

Personalized learning has been discussed, analyzed and debated among educators from every perspective.  In most cases, we agree that student voice and choice is a key ingredient in creating personalized learning environments. Last spring, a senior from Kettle Moraine School District was invited to be a guest blogger on The Institute @ CESA #1 blog to share her thoughts about personalized learning.  Gillian Locke, a senior at KM Global Charter School, shared her perspective on the advantages she had in participating in a personalized learning environment and in owning her learning.  Here are just a few excerpts from that insightful blog.

"Unlike most seniors in high school, I have the freedom to choose what I want to do when I wake up each morning.  I am not limited to an 8 hour bell schedule like my peers, nor does my learning stop when I drive off the high school parking lot at 2:30 pm."

She makes a point on what happens when you are in control of your own learning.

"I’ve noticed too that when I’m enjoying my learning, I learn better. What I learn in a day is more etched into my mind than what it might’ve been had I been learning in a generic format in the traditional high school. It’s also easier to make personal connections to what you learn, when you’re the one in control of learning it, and we all know that personally connecting to what you’re learning cements it more in your mind, and gives you a better understanding of it."

 Her final thoughts provide optimism for the future of education.

"Every student is different, and each one needs different things. Every school in the US has the potential to deliver personalized learning to each of its students-it will just take some creativity, some time, and some dedicated students, administrators, and teachers."

Thank you Gillian for giving a student voice to personalized learning.

Read Gillian's complete blog post, "Personalized Learning:  A Student's Perspective".

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