Engaging Students in Discussions

These activities are designed to help students engage and participate in discussions. They aim to help advance the high level of critical thinking, public-speaking-skill development, and engagement that in-class discussions promote. They also help students partner with teachers for deep learning by stimulating their metacognitive skills to recognize how they are learning and how they can improve.

The proposed tasks are predicated on the assumption that student participation goes beyond simply speaking in class to include activities such as these:

  • pre-class preparation (reading, note-taking, thinking, planning)
  • in-class listening in order to truly hear what others are saying and understand them
  • willingness to reconsider one’s ideas
  • courage to speak
  • courage to question others’ ideas respectfully and defend one’s ideas
  • readiness to analyze how one is participating and how to improve

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