One significant way we can empower our students and reimagine our learning environments is to bring student voices forward. Begin with questions such as: What can you tell me about school that teachers and administrators don't know?" to get started with engaging in student feedback roundtable sessions. Create a "Parking Lot" in your classrooms for student questions that come up spontaneously during lessons. There are so many easy ways to integrate student voice into our schools.
Think about the following excerpts of a continuum of student voice and leadership created by Sammanish HS, Bellevue School District, Washington.
Integration: (teacher led, student collaboration) Students contribute to the class through a variety of modes offered by the teacher.
Transformation (student led): Students co-construct course content through formulating their own learning activities, questions and through regular opportunities for feedback. Students are empowered to raise issues with the class outside of teacher-designated times and are encouraged to use their own expertise to improve the culture in the classrooms.
Empowerment (Student initiated and led): Students see themselves as changemakers and key stakeholders in their education. They actively ensure that ll voices are heard when development class norms and discussing content. They take responsibility for the learning of the community as a whole, actively seek out opportunities to assist peers inside and outside the classroom environment.
Enlist student voice into either the planning of a unit or lesson to help co-construct your curriculum or enlist student voice into the design of the assessment.
Questions to Consider
For more resources check out Student Voice.org