Gradual Release of Responsibility

My goal is for my students to be self-directed and independent learners.  This is an entirely achievable goal- even in Preschool!  I recall reading in a book about the pedagogy of inquiry, something to the effect of: In an inquiry classroom, the students should be working harder than the teacher.  I hold this statement as a fundamental axiom.

By building a solid foundation of expectations, students can eventually take responsibility for most classroom tasks and activities.  I read a good description of this gradual release of responsibility as:  I do =>We do =>You do. 

I build the foundation for a release of responsibility beginning the first day of school, using rhythm, repetition, and respect.  By the sixth week of school, the children ought to be settled into the routine; whereupon the teacher can slowly start tasking the children to administer to many of their own learning activities. 

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