I am following along with The Primary Gal's book study of Learn Like a Pirate by Paul Solarz.
As I said before in my thoughts on chapter 1 I do have some concerns about having a student-led classroom. Luckily, the author addresses these concerns (and others) in this second chapter. Solarz acknowledges that the decision to transition to a student-led classroom can be a challenging one, but he assures that switching methods has eliminated more challenges than it has created. He also believes that student-led classrooms result in greater engagement, and subsequently greater gains.
Paul Solarz addresses the biggest concern right off the bat. He recognizes that it is hard to relinquish control, but he says that you are not really giving it up. Students know that ultimately the teacher's say is final, but the teacher chooses not to interfere with most of the students decisions because we want them to learn from their mistakes. It is important to encourage your students to be risk takers rather than followers.
Just like our students learn from mistakes, so do we. Solarz says that mistakes are a healthy part of the learning process. Our students need us to model a healthy reaction to making mistakes so that they learn to be comfortable with handling their own mistakes.
If you are anything like me, the one thing you can never have enough of in your classroom is time! It always seems like there are just not enough hours to get everything in! Will allowing my students to run the show waste even more time? Solarz says, no. it will actually save time by maximizing time-on-task, making transitions more efficient, and integrating subjects.
Even with my concerns, I believe this to be true, so I am excited to keep learning and even to make mistakes as I try this out.
What concerns do you have? Are you as excited to try this as I am? Join us in this book study and chime in!
If you would like to see my thoughts from other chapters, check them out below:
Chapter 1 - What is a Student-Led Classroom?