Reflection: Discourse and Questioning History of Earth: Part 1: Discovery - Section 5: Discussion


I just started using Socratic Seminars this year and I LOVE them.  The big idea in a Socratic Seminar is that students are using a high level resource in a group discussion where students build off of each others' answers.  The first time I experimented we had some problems with kids shouting out vs kids raising their hands.  Personally, I try to be as little involved as possible, which means I like the students to decide who should talk just like they do in "real" conversations.  Now, I let the conversations go unless they get too excited, which is when I gently step in to call on certain students and slow the pace.  

The interesting results I found in using a Socratic Seminar is that it gives different kids a chance to shine. It's not just about the fastest readers or best's about the kids that love to verbally process and interact.  As you can see  from the picture...this means that not every student participates every time.  I'm OK with this because I also have the notes to tell me which students got the information and there is a project at the end of the movie to help give me a different picture of student learning.  

  Socratic Seminars
  Discourse and Questioning: Socratic Seminars
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History of Earth: Part 1: Discovery

Unit 12: History of Earth: Part 1
Lesson 1 of 7

Objective: Students will be able to gather information about Earth's formation from a resource.

Big Idea: The Earth started as a ball of dust?!!

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