Reflection: Lesson Planning Preparing to Write a Synthesis Essay Day 2: Group Consultancy Protocol - Section 3: Consultancy Protocol


Having the students take home their peers' summaries and questions for review, and in fact having students complete the summaries in class yesterday, were key to the strong engagement today.  I didn't have a single student not involved in conversation (at least that I saw), and they were having strong discourse throughout the class.  However, the discussion was a bit broad at times, and also tended toward their own experiences in some cases at the expense of focusing on texts.  The fact that they addressed texts as much as they did was likely due to them writing text-based responses to the summaries last night.  Reading their summaries, I think part of the issue is also due to how broad their topics are; I think some of the work in the coming days will be to help students narrow and specify their topics.  I also think that the number of texts to sift through is quite hefty--next time I teach this class, I will probably categorize the texts around some prompts rather than having the students come up with the topic to enter the conversation with all on their own--we'll see once the essays are done, but I suspect I probably needed to add one more level of specificity for the students regarding their topics, so I'll have to help them individually as we conference.

Attached are three samples of the summaries they wrote coming in to get a sense of what the students were doing based on my model.

  Lesson Planning: Strong Discussions on Broad Topics
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Preparing to Write a Synthesis Essay Day 2: Group Consultancy Protocol

Unit 5: Writing a Synthesis Essay
Lesson 3 of 6

Objective: SWBAT use multiple sources in learning how to synthesize information for entering a discourse about a given topic by a presentation and discussion with peers.

Big Idea: Discussing complicated topics with peers can open up new avenues of discourse.

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