Date of Award

Summer 8-2021

Document Type

Project (696 or 796 registration)

Degree Name

Master of Science in Curriculum & Instruction


Graduate Studies

Committee Chair

Ximena Suarez Sousa


personalized learning, ethnography, habits of mind, social emotional skills, engagement


While teaching using a personalized learning concept, it was discovered that learners did not have the necessary social emotional skills that they needed in order to successfully make decisions for their learning. Throughout researching personalized learning, engagement, self-pacing, and empowered learning three different Habits of Mind, the school district’s social emotional learning program, were identified to teach to a small group of learners in grades three through six to help them better understand what personalized learning is and why they are doing it in order to take ownership of their learning. Therefore this research question was created: How does the explicit teaching of three Habits of Mind change the level of ownership learners take in a personalized learning model? Learners took a four question open ended survey at the beginning of the study, then they were taught three different Habits of Mind over three weeks and then took the exact same survey in order to compare the results. The researcher also completed a journal throughout to include their thoughts and feelings of what was happening in the classroom. The survey showed direct, tangible results of the level of ownership change for the learners but the journaling showed a much greater level of ownership change. Learners went from not making appropriate choices and struggling with personalized learning to choosing choices that fit them well academically and persevering through challenges that come with personalized learning. With even more social emotional instruction, the level of ownership hopefully would continue to improve.



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