Flipped Teaching Tools, Resources, How-Tos

7 Activities to Encourage Students to Take Ownership of Their Learning

[Sorry – the site that these links went to appears to have been taken off-line, and not moved any where that I can find! – K. Walsh, 8/15/16]

Imagine if we could get lots of students to embrace self-directed, self-motivated learning?! Oh, what a wonderful world (yeah, now Louie Armstrong is gonna be in your head all day)!

Flipped Instruction sets the stage for increasing self-directed learning, a goal many teachers find to be fundamental to the learning outcomes we strive for.


I found a great set of resources on Maurice Gibbons’ Self Directed Learning web site that teachers can use to help older students take a serious look at their motivations and move themselves in a more self-directed learning direction. These activities are best suited to those at the higher education and high school level, as they require a certain level of maturity and self-awareness.

I thought many teachers might find some inspiring ideas here that they can use in their classrooms to get students thinking about their own learning, and quite possibly taking fuller ownership of it. Some of these may work better than others, depending on your students. You may also want to create your own version of some of the activities, adjusting the language and objectives as you see fit.

Of course, this also depends on the types of courses you teach. I know these would work great in the Transformational Learning course we require students to take at the start of their programs at The College of Westchester. But fitting lessons around these ideas into a Math class, for example, might be pretty challenging!

These activities can also be a great development tool for you and I, to better understand our own motivations.

Personally, I thought Activity 6 was an outstanding lesson in maturity, personal growth, and self-awareness.

I’d love to hear from teachers who choose to use some of these in their classrooms, or who simply use them themselves. Don’t be shy now – please share your experience!

Creative Commons Licensed Butterfly Image by Patty O’Hearn Kickham

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