Some students had expressed that they like the ability to choose what work needed done. But one brave student spoke up to share their uneasiness and I truly appreciated it.
When I gave the students a choice of project, I also moved to a high-score style points-accumulation method. That created for some, the sense of a looming deadline on the horizon which resulted in paralysis.
It made me realize some students need the freedom to choose WITHIN a smaller context. Then today another class mentioned that they really like working through Codecademy which only confirmed what I had recently learned. There, students can choose the topics of study (and one has switched mid-stream already) but everything is broken into bite-size pieces.
As I continue to develop my curriculum map for next year, I'm going to allow students to choose their projects but only give them limited choices in a shorter time frame.
View my current class framework.
View the beginnings of a modified class framework.