Students come from diverse social, economical and learning backgrounds. Therefore a “one-size fits all” approach to learning does not benefit the learner or the educator. Students who aren’t engaged are less likely to have success within a constrained classroom. These same students have skills and strengths that fall into the background of a “one-size fits all” classroom. When schools embrace choice; course content, delivery options, project choices, students can use their strengths to express what they have learned.
These strengths are related to the concept of multiple intelligences by Dr. Howard Gardner (1983) and express how students and people learn and share their understanding in many ways. Paying attention to students intelligences will help to build student agency and engagement in the classroom. According to Professor Howard Gardner of Harvard University (2020), this approach to education opens the doors for new ways of thinking and learning in the classroom.
It’s important to embrace the strengths of students and let go of traditional approaches to teaching and learning if we want to engage students within the classroom!