Welcome back to the blog, and Happy 2019 to you all!
As many of you know, I spent much of my career in one small, independent boarding school in New Hampshire. During the last few years I worked there, a phrase crept into our frequent use: challenge by choice. This phrase originated in outdoor education programs and adventure-based counseling, both of which were particular points of interest for our Head of School. Based on his explanations of the concept, I understood that challenge by choice allowed an individual to choose whether to participate in a particular activity, or to opt out. Everyone in the group was expected to respect each individual's choice to participate or not.
Though I try to differentiate lessons in order to engage students at their particular readiness levels, I know that some students are craving additional academic stimulation. I'd like to take the challenge by choice principle and put it into action in Room 152. In the next week or so, you'll be hearing more details regarding our 2019 Reading Challenge and our 2019 Story Notebook Challenge. I'll offer the challenges to all my students and respect their choices to participate or to opt out.