Tic-Tac-Toe (as a choice format or template)
Susan Winebrenner (1992) introduced this "choice" template for publishing various options (or a menu) for unit learning activities.
It is important the tasks on the choice menu not be percived as time-fillers, but they instead afford many options that are all linked to the key learning targets for the unit of study. They are assessed using a rubric or checklist the teacher has created to measure learning acquired by task completion.
Winebrenner (1992) stated that "The tic-tac-toe aspect is optional; you may prefer your students to choose certain number of activites without following any obvious pattern. It's a good idea to set evaluation before the student begins working on the acttivities" (p. 57).
Whether the template is used as a chocie menu or whether a pattern required, the teacher has invested effort in ensuring all options are differentiated for readiness, learning preference, or some definable learning goal for student participnts.
Some choice options for designing tic-tac-toe menu templates:
1 square or task:
- teacher fills all 9 squares with learning tasks/products, student has free choice
- teacher fills 8 squares, leaves 9th square open and invites students to create their own, appropriate task/product to showcase learning
2 squares or tasks:
- student has two (2) free choices from all squares, or
- 1 square may be teacher-assigned, 2nd square student choice, or
- 1 square is free choice and 2nd task is a student-designed task (with teacher feedback/approval)
3 squares or tasks:
- student has three (3) free choices that do not replicate learning content, process - ensures variety for a unit with many learning goals, or
- student commits to a pattern of 3-across, 3-down, or diagonal (through the center for everyone)
Resource- Susan Winebrenner (1992). Teaching Gifted Kids in the Regular Classroom, Minneapolis, MN: Free Spirit Publishing.