Could the ideal classroom setting be one where choice is highly valued? The answer to this question is yes, embracing student choice in the classroom allows teachers to engage students on a new level. Students in classrooms throughout the world are the future of our generation. To prepare students for the future, their ability to make choices must be seen as something that is highly valued.

When students are given choice in the classroom it increases their motivation and the performance of their tasks. Ultimately, students are more engaged and willing to learn material when they are given the choice in a classroom. The ability to make choices in a classroom also gives students a sense of independence. This is because teachers spend time monitoring classwork as opposed to controlling it.  Additionally, if a student wants to take a certain angle on a task they can as long as it lines up with the general requirements of a project. Students generally respond well to this type of learning due to the sense of freedom that they are being given. Moreover, some students might roll their eyes at the idea of big projects but it can be made fun if they are given a choice over their projects format. This also allows students to display an understanding of the subject manner in creative ways.

Robert Marzano, an educational researcher encourages teachers to give students choice in the following:

  • Tasks to perform
  • Ways to report
  • Establishing their own learning goals

Allowing students to report on how they did on their work can be considered especially effective. Students should be given the choice to evaluate their work and try to determine the following. “What aspect of my work was most effective and why?” “What aspect of my work was least effective and why?” This allows students to understand their strengths and weaknesses in any body of work they can then pinpoint areas where they need to improve.

A school is a place that helps students to grow, and to better prepare themselves for the future they should be allowed to challenge themselves and have their choices valued in the classroom.