2 Steps to Become a Student-Centered Educator in Any Teaching Environment

By Saki Hashimoto, Learning Facilitator, TGR Foundation – A Tiger Woods Charity

Student engagement, in either the in-person or virtual environment, is critical to learning.  One way to immediately connect with students and heighten engagement is to teach in the student-centered approach. The student-centered approach emphasizes authentic opportunities for students to be creators of information, not just consumers of information.

Here’s a two-step process to make the student-centered approach come alive in your own teaching, no matter where learning is taking place:

  1. Reflect on your teaching style.

Teachers teach in ways that fit state and national standards, but also in ways that they know. After a semester or two of distance or hybrid learning, teachers need time to reflect. Now is the time to ask yourself questions like:

  • What do I need to be a more effective instructor?

  • In what ways does my curriculum provide space for students to discover?

  • What do I want engaged students to look like?

  • How do I transform my learning environment so that students are active in their learning process?

Take the time you need to sit back and think about these questions and how you would answer them. Be honest with yourself. Then, start to find answers to your ideas with resources designed to support you.

  1. Explore professional learning resources that help you bring students back to the center.

Discover new resources to support your efforts. Set aside 30-45 minutes to take advantage of a new no cost professional development learning module designed to empower teachers to create a student-centered learning environment. This module from TGR EDU: Explore – an educational program from TGR Foundation and Discovery Education – uncovers concrete strategies for improving the students’ learning experiences in a variety of disciplines

In the online module, educators find the one-stop tool that helps identify areas of growth in their own practice. Plus, teachers can go even deeper with the in-depth companion guide, chocked full of helpful information like activities, resources, discussion questions, and other resources.

At the end of the interactive module, educators can:

  • Distinguish between a teacher-centered and student-centered classroom environment

  • Articulate why a student-centered learning environment is beneficial for students

  • Identify multiple tools and strategies to implement a student-centered learning environment

  • Reflect on the learning environment using a self-assessment rubric

The module provides clarity of the intended goals and outcomes of creating a student-centered environment by examining your current learning environment and providing direction for creating opportunities for collaboration, creativity, and engagement.

In summary…

Through a student-centered approach, students become more engaged in learning and receive opportunities to develop critical skills, knowledge, and practices that will help them thrive beyond graduation. Turn to TGR EDU: Explore’s professional learning resources that deliver teaching strategies focused on connecting all students to success in school and beyond

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