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FIELD EXPERIENCE FALL 2015
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512 Agenda 7.30.13
Post questions, comments, ideas to discuss based on your professional engagement research on discussion-based instruction.
(To post - 1) Sign in, 2) Click "edit", 3) Type your entry, 4) Sign your post (three tildes ~), 5) Click "save")
I like the idea of discussion-based lessons, but for math it only seems feasible as a summative plan. For instance, the video example of the math class used discussion as more of a quiz; it didn't seem like actual discussion to me because most of the time there was only a right/wrong answer. How can I use discussion to initially teach an equation or theory?
Discussion activities rock. I have done 50 min class discussion, but usually 30 minutes works best for me. I think being well prepared, both the students and the teacher is crucial, or the whole thing can really drag and not be as productive. I found the ways to get all students participating to be very helpful. I also liked the suggestions for students who talk too much. Yes, I resemble that remark.
I agree katherine...discussion activities do rock! especially when students take ideas and run....it's very gratifying when students can have a thoughtful, challenging, and respectful dialogue without relying on the teacher for validation or confirmation that they're "right." i agree that giving students questions a day prior can help not only formulate their thoughts, but allow the quieter/shy students to develop ideas they can later share....one of my biggest concerns/challenges with discussion is getting everyone to talk...so many times, (especially when the teacher becomes more of a quiet observer), the more dominate students will take over...i think it's good to ask open questions (meaning anyone can answer), but i also think it's important to call on specific people, so that everyone can have a chance to speak.
I am a big fan of discussions but I liked that the reading emphasized that you should come prepared with specific questions and clear objectives. Just because discussions are flexible doesn't mean they should be a free for all. Most of the reading dealt primarily with the role of a teacher as a facilitator of discussions but I wonder if you could have student led discussions just as often. Maybe the teacher could as a few open ended questions to start and then students could read questions they had prepared before hand. This might allow students to feel more comfortable and relaxed and more invested in the discussion.
I LOVED the various techniques that the Janine Schaub site outlined but like Kari, I have a hard time seeing how these could work for chemistry, which is often thought of as a subject with right and wrong answers. However, I think some of these ideas would be awesome for a review and that would really help students get involved and maybe flush out some of their problem areas. I really liked the Hatful of Quotations technique. It will be interesting to explore discussions in a science based class.
Discussion-based instruction is something that can benefit social studies classrooms a lot! Wading through primary sources and discussing the various perspectives as a group can really help students look all sides of an issue. I especially liked the material about getting non-speakers speaking. As one of these people myself, I really connected with the idea of getting everyone speaking right away. I don't know how many times the minutes would quickly fly by and it was definitely increasingly difficult to speak as time went by.
As a future social studies teacher I love the discussion based lessons. I remember a humanities class that I loved because of all the Socratic Seminars and student-led discussions. What I really took to heart was look for the student that is ready and wanting to share but isn't raising their hand. Look at the body language! So many times I have wanted to talk yet don't want to raise my hand in fear of taking the floor from someone else. Just because I'm not raising my hand doesn't mean I don't have thoughtful, good things to say!
I can see small group based discussion instruction being particularly helpful in both the math and science disciplines. Limit the topic that is being discussed to maybe one article per group, set up students with a list of key concepts that they need to focus on that are relative to the classes objectives, have them discuss as a group then bring the information to the group at large in a presentation or jig-saw it. I think the biggest challenge of discussion-based learning is the ability to accurately assess students understanding. What are some ways of accurately assessing discussion-based instruction? The paper by Mello goes into a bit of detail about how he assessed his class, however he also says that his evidence is strictly anecdotal but was observed to improve classroom grades (although he also moderately changed his testing structure to better suit discussion-based learning).
I think discussion is critical in both Social Studies and English, so developing good discussion skills will be important. One point that really caught my eye was what to do when a student, or a whole class, hasn't done the reading. Do you skip that student and move on? Do you do the readings in class? I think one point the author covered was asking yourself as a teacher if the reading was too difficult or if the students had the tools to do the readings. I think this is a good approach, though it doesn't exactly answer the question.
9:00- 9:15 - Welcome and review (Marin)
Notetaker: Marin, Matt
It is helpful to think of management as an energy issue rather than behavioral.
- Helps reduce frustration with distracting behavior
- Prevents students from feeling your frustration and leads to a more productive class
(How are you coming on your learning contract?)
Post link to web presences on Links page on the 512 homepage
9:15 - 10:00
CHIP Writing task to prepare
We need to teach kids how to have civil, informed, respectful, open minded discussions
Facilitating discussions teaches so much more than content- major social impacts
Teaching them civil discourse allows them to be discriminating of political, social media, pop culture, and other sorts of discussions
Ways to facilitate discussion
Write good discussion questions
Way of keeping track of who has participated (roster, popsicle sticks, etc.)
Protocol for discussion (raise hands, shout out answers, etc)
Participation structures can privilege types of learners
Just waiting for the first hands to go up favors the kids who are faster thinking or more outgoing
Ways to ensure quality content while promoting student generated discussion
Allow them to keep notes in the conversation from previous research to give the shyer students a resource to fall back on
Give students time and a chance to prepare for the discussion
What does it mean to "actively participate"?
Not just blurting out answers occasionally
Involves active listening as well
Describe factors that can promote or sabotage high-quality classroom discussion
Describe several teaching strategies that can promote discussion and widespread participation
Create an activity plan for a discussion-based lesson
Explain purposes of differentiation and what it means to differentiate by product, process, and content
Ways to cultivate a thinking space
Have students write things down
Don't call on the first person to raise their hand
Share/ discuss with a partner or small group
Fishbowl activity (CHIP- Challenged you, Helped you, Inspired you, Perplexed you?)
Inner circle- conversation
Outer circle- listens to inner circle conversation, can take notes etc.
It is hard to put together the "perfect" mix of students that allow for optimization of discussion conditions (factors can include culture, gender, shy level, refusal to participate),
Can't force students to speak,
Hard to incorporate discussion into math/ science classes- challenges with assessment and flow of discussion because science/math are subjects with right/wrong answers (Have discussion beforehand to see what previous knowledge they come to class with, good pre/post activity, hard to incorporate during a lesson, use it as a way to answer other students' questions- allow for peer teaching in small groups)
What if kids didn't read? What can you do?
Start the discussion with everyone speaking to set the comfort level- even if this initial discussion is not about the topic at hand, teachers need to watch body language
website with the different types of discussion- allowed framework for the discussion
Have students bring questions to class then turn them in after the discussion- ways of assessment
Discuss controversial topics with two valid sides
Have students research in class before discussion-assess source bias/ reliability
Have a discussion before a test or before the end of a unit---peer teaching
Assess preparation and debate quality
Giving students a new avenue to explore challenging subjects could help them learn
Hat of quotes-discuss why something is true or false
Give roles other than talking-note taker, question asker
How to deal with students that were not present in class for the introduction to a unit, how to prevent wasting two of their days (maybe have an easily accessible syllabus so they can check what was missed)
How can we use smart phones / twitter
How can we assess discussions
Challenges of a fishbowl
Students may be uncomfortable inside the inner circle
Students can lose interest if they are in the outer circle too long
Be cautious of attention spans
Different backgrounds can dominate the conversation and potentially exclude someone
Positive attributes of a fishbowl
Break down social barriers- encourage students who wouldn't normally take center stage to do so
Put together groups of kids that may not naturally stick together
Students tend to participate more
Value in just having to listen without having to contribute
Different kinds of teaching in the video
Teaching slope and undefined slope
Story based learning
Cross teaching/group learning
Mix of direct and discussion
"Quiz" as a group
Story about movie with Danny Glover
Teaching slope and undefined slope
"Hi. I'm a banana."
Examples of slopes
Shows how slope is calculated- rise over run
Differentiation- does it matter how we get to the objective as long as we get there?
Best practice for whom?
10:00 - 10:15 - Create
Discussion-Based Lesson Rubric
Educative Responses and Affirmation
For each of the categories outlined in the Google Doc, give today's presenter a check if you saw it and brief feedback
10:15 - 10:25 - Break
10:25 - 11:00 - Model Lesson (Constructive Controversy)
Groups of four - 2 pro, 2 con
Five minutes to prepare an argument
Each side has 2 minutes to present their position; other side just listens
Other side presents while opposing pair just listens
Each side has 3 minutes to prepare the opposite argument
Each side presents while the other side listens (2 minutes each)
The group of 4 debates and comes to a consensus (5 minutes)
11:00 - 11:20 - NTSG: Establishing a professional working relationship with your cooperating teacher
Be a good "guest"
Professional communication (e.g. What if you don't agree with your CT?)
Tell me about x.
As a new teacher, could you help me understand x?
Would it be alright if I x?
Establishing a set time to communicate.
Ways to contribute . . .
11:20 - 12:20 - Lunch and discussion-based activity guides
12:20 - 1:30 - Teaching Demos
1:30 - 1:35 - Break
1:35 - 2:20 - Introduction to Differentiation
Differentiation Cue Card
Teach a concept using playdough, movement, music, or nature.
2:20 - 2:40 - TED Talk - Sir Ken Robison
- Escaping Education's Death Valley
(Start at 14:50)
2:40 - 3:00 - Closure and Housekeeping
Preparation for tomorrow is here:
A draft of your first lesson plan is due tomorrow. We'll conference in class.
Reviewer - Shannon
help on how to format text
Turn off "Getting Started"