Choice can be a powerful tool for helping our students become independent learners. We've found that giving students choice about where they sit in the room provides a sense of control over their learning environment and usually leads to making wise choices about where they will be most successful.
Sometimes, however, our most at-risk students are more successful with fewer choices. We have used carpet squares or square yards of fabric to define seating space. Although it works like magic for some students, the squares or fabric have, on occasion, become magic carpets that take flight throughout the room.
So defining a space in alternative ways that can't fly about the room is a wonderful idea. We have used masking tape to define spaces on the floor, but if your room is carpeted, it can leave a sticky residue. On carpeted areas, we use white chalk to draw a space on the floor to define it for students. Now when our high-risk students are ready to be sent off, they select one of those options. Providing choice, while limiting options, has been what our barometer children needed to be successful.
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