Class Discussions

Edutopia offers some ideas about class discussions including:

When seated in a circle, three students get one of the following jobs:

  1. scribe: takes notes so rest of the class doesn’t have to worry about taking their own
    (how would that student then share his/her notes with everyone else? On a class blog/website? Making copies for each student?)
  2. discussion mapper: uses a diagram to track who is talking and how often
    (then use the diagram after the discussion and/or before the next one to assess how individuals contributed (their frequency, at least) to encourage them to talk more or less)
    Here’s a discussion diagram template (provided the links hold up).
    Here’s an example of a used discussion diagram of an apparently very small class.
    (For if/when the links give out: Draw a circle. Write each student’s name on the outside edges of the circle based on where they’re sitting. Draw lines (like a web) from person to person as each student talks. Add letters such as I for “interrupt” or E for “evidence” next to a student’s name when needed.)
  3. moderator: makes sure discussion goes smoothly, that students don’t dominate, everyone stays civil, and by allowing for quieter students to speak

More info about class discussions as I run across it.

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