Building a Sense of Agency

A sense of agency, as brought to us by Choice Words, is the idea that children’s mindset at school should be that they can reach their goals. It takes me back to the concept of “if you say you’re a writer, then you’re a writer.” It’s all about attitude, motivation, and relationships (but not necessarily in that order).

It all begins in the classroom with a teacher modeling a certain activity or behavior for his/her students. We as teachers need to model the behavior that’s expected for students in order to fulfill those educational needs and ideals. Once an activity has been modeled it becomes an identity. The learner can identify with those expectations and the light bulb moments start to occur.

Then comes the all important motivational boost. When we are given compliments on our work that boosts our confidence and ego a bit. It’s a natural phenomena of being human. So we motivate and celebrate our students which improves our relationship.

From there comes self reflection and revealing. We are feeling confident that we did a good job but was everything successful? What were we not sure about? How did we figure things out? It’s highly encouraged to look back on our own work and reflect on our progress-strengths and weaknesses. And by reflecting and motivating and even finding that identity, we are able to keep the cycle going and open up a world of possibilities. And all of this is possible through finding and creating that sense of agency.


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