Teachers spend every moment they can to keep up with the demands of their work. One of those demands, Danielson component 3b, requires teachers to implement practices that will spark discussion among their students. Keep the Kids Talking, which we offer as both an in-person workshop series and as an asynchronous online course, addresses this component by providing an opportunity for educators to learn targeted instructional strategies that create conditions for authentic, student-driven discussion in their classrooms.
When connecting with our most recent online course cohort via phone, we enacted our Thinking & Talking strategy, which enables the use of silent cues to communicate when you have something to say. To use this strategy, each person in the group is equipped with a small card that can be flipped to reveal that they want to contribute to the discussion, or that they’re still thinking. Participants can then call on one another as the discussion moves along, instead of waiting for a teacher or facilitator to decide who should speak next.
“This was valuable for my quieter students. With a simple card flip, they could show that they had something to say, and when another student passed to them, they were more easily able to join the discussion."
Before the end of the course, teachers are often sailing past proficient and onto distinguished along the Danielson Framework rubric for 3b, with the following goals well within their plans and practice:
Sustained reflection and discussion over the 12-week course provided the support these teachers had been searching for to move their questioning and discussion practice to the next level. For more strategies, join us for an in-person, 3-session series starting this February, or stay tuned for our next online offering of this course by checking out our upcoming events.