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#Agency, what does it mean and what is its value?

December 6, 2015

I read this blog article, What Teaching Skills Help Build Student ‘Agency’?,  by Stephen Sawchuk from the October 28, 2015 edition of Education Week.  He reviews the recent study published by Harvard University as part of their Achievement Gap Initiative, The Influence of Teaching Beyond Standardized Test Scores: Engagement, Mindsets, and Agency A Study of 16,000 Sixth through Ninth Grade Classrooms.  Sawchuk’s article, a quick summary of the Harvard study, was particularly interesting because of the graphic illustrated below.

 

Screen Shot 2015-10-26 at 11.44.40 PM.png (605×738) copy

Comes from the Harvard study on page 11

While the 7 Cs are not surprising, it is interesting to think about how our teaching would have to change to model the 7 Cs on a regularly basis.  I think the assumption is that teachers are powerful agents to promote a growth mindset environment in the classroom, a mindset that helps build agency.  What if we use the graphic above to self-evaluate how well we accomplish this in our classrooms?

 

 

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