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Empowering the Learner. Jenifer Born District Peer Mentor Teacher . Desired Outcomes. Develop understanding of brain research as it relates to learning Investigate proper use of feedback Explore ideas for involving students Explore practices in which students monitor their own learning.

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empowering the learner

Empowering the Learner

Jenifer Born

District Peer Mentor Teacher

desired outcomes
Desired Outcomes
  • Develop understanding of brain research as it relates to learning
  • Investigate proper use of feedback
  • Explore ideas for involving students
  • Explore practices in which students monitor their own learning
  • Everyone participates; no one dominates
  • Stay focused and take responsibility for your learning
  • Be positive
  • Use technology respectfully

The new appraisal system focuses strongly on a student-centered, student-led classroom.

Research supports this type of classroom learning environment because it empowers students and positively impacts student achievement.

framework for learning
Framework for Learning
  • Teach your students about the brain and learning
  • Teach your students about a growth mindset for learning
priscilla vail author of emotion the on off switch for learning
Priscilla Vail, author of Emotion: The On/Off Switch for Learning

“Faced with frustration, despair, worry, sadness, or shame, kids lose access to their own memory, reasoning, and the capacity to make connections.”

vail further states
Vail further states…

“The emotional brain, the limbic system, has the power to open or close access to learning, memory, and the ability to make novel connections.”

growth mindset
Growth Mindset

Dweck (2006) states, “One way to create a growth mindset culture for learning is by providing the right kinds of praise and encouragement.”



Shifting from a teacher-led classroom to a student-centered classroom requires a significant change in thinking.

in my classroom
In my classroom…

How might you give students a more significant role in your classroom?


Use Bounce cards as sentence stems for responses.

bounce card
Bounce Card


Take what your classmate(s) said and bounce an idea off of it. For example, you can start your sentences with…

“That reminds me of…”

“I agree, because…”

“True. Another example is when…”

“That’s a great point…”

sum it up
Sum it up

Sum it up:

Rephrase what was just said in a shorter version. For example, you can start your sentences with…

“I hear you saying that…”

“So, if I understand you correctly…”

“I like how you said…”



Understand what your classmates mean by asking them questions. For example, you can start your questions with…

“Can you tell me more about that?”

“I’m not sure I understand...”

“I see your point, but what about….?”

“Have you thought about…?”

ponder this
Ponder this…
  • People always say, “There is no such thing as constructive criticism.”
  • My question: Is there “constructive” feedback?
suggested practices for high quality feedback
Suggested Practices for High Quality Feedback


Giving feedback to students lets the students know that you know them well and that you care about their effort and their progress.

  • Connect to clear learning targets that teachers have shared with students.
  • Begin with the strengths in the student work under discussion.
  • Discuss questions or concerns about the work.
suggested practices for high quality feedback continued
Suggested Practices for High Quality Feedback, continued
  • Provide direction on how to address these questions and concerns.
  • Be individualized to each student.
  • Be delivered in student-accessible language and forms.
  • Arrive when learners can still use it.
another type of feedback to consider
Another Type of Feedback to consider

Giving feedback about effort helps students to better understand that perseverance and persistence pays off.

read and do
Read and Do
  • Read the article, “Keeping the Destination in Mind.”
  • Find three key points
  • Rank the three key points
  • Summarize the top ranked point
  • Share with a partner
  • Be prepared to share
creating the opportunity to learn
Creating the Opportunity to Learn

Boykin and Noguera(2012) stated,

“Evidence has mounted that learners’ goals can significantly affect academic functioning in ways that can address the achievement gap.”

data notebooks
Data Notebooks

Use of Data Notebooks is recommended strategy for improved student performance and supported by Baldrige.

  • http://www.montgomeryschoolsmd.org/info/baldrige/staff/addresources.shtm
  • http://www.pendercountyschools.net/cms/One.aspx?portalId=3727476&pageId=11081042
student led conferencing
Student-Led Conferencing

There are many forms available online that you might consider when planning for student-led conferencing.

  • Share video
  • Discuss