Month: May 2015


Talk Moves Create a Culture of Talk: Fostering Student Talk and Classroom Dialogue – Part 3

Great discussions are one outcome of a classroom culture where students’ thoughts are welcome and where students are regularly expected to speak, listen and respond to one another. Talk Moves are strategies that help us build that culture. (Super helpful 2-minute video explaining Talk Moves) (Repeating, Adding On, Silent Signals, Change Thinking – LOVE the teaching channel! Don’t’ you?)

These are some more of the best talk moves I’ve come across:

Don’t repeat what students say. Wow, that’s hard. It’s so automatic […]

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What Can We Do About Those Cliches? – FOSTERING STUDENT TALK AND CLASSROOM DIALOGUE – PART 2

During a recent peer learning lab, teachers observed students latching on to clichéd responses during small- and whole-group discussion. For example, some students were saying the author’s message was “just open your heart to life” or “love is all there is.” In the debrief, the teachers expressed concern that students weren’t arriving at a more nuanced understanding. The question we spent the next twenty minutes chewing on was “What can we do when students respond to challenging interpretive questions with […]

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Fostering Student Talk and Classroom Dialogue – Part 1

(This is the first post in a five-part series)

Dialogue increases student learning across all academic content areas. Period. Vast amounts of research support this. In his 2010 Education Week article, Do No Harm, E.D. Hirsch asserts that,

“To impart adequate verbal competence is the most important single goal of schooling in any nation. Verbal scores are reliable indexes to general competence, life chances and civic participation. Good verbal scores diminish notorious income gap. Decades of data show […]

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Student Work Studies: What Educators are Saying

During my many years as a classroom teacher I taught in primary through secondary grades and in public, private, and charter schools, and regardless of the type of school or grade level I was teaching a common pattern reoccurred. At the beginning of each school year I would attend a half day, or if lucky, one whole day of training in whatever new initiative, strategy or trend was “hot” in education, and then I would be handed a stack of […]

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