Ask Probing Questions and Engage in Student-led Inquiry
Collaborative Group Work: Students work collaboratively to discuss problems and ideas in context, to solve problems together, and to complete projects or assessments with a deliberate protocol that establishes norms for student interaction.
Collaborative Group Work: Students work collaboratively to discuss problems and ideas in context, to solve problems together, and to complete projects or assessments with a deliberate protocol that establishes norms for student interaction.

Debate Preparation Work and Reflection

Nicholas establishes expectations and debate routines with his students. He provides time before the debate for student groups to prepare for their roles in the debate. He structures the debate so students know and are prepared for their roles. And, after the debate, he asks students to reflect in writing on how they and their peers performed in the debate.

About This Strategy
prep time:
Moderate
Grade Level: Eighth grade
Teaching Challenge: Ask Probing Questions and Engage in Student-led Inquiry
Nicholas Gearing
Boulder Creek High School
Anthem, AZ
Strategy Implementation Questions
Questions to think about when implementing the strategy
  • How could you structure this type of preparation time to encourage each student to engage in an effective debate?
  • How could you modify or adjust this strategy to meet the needs of your students?
  • How could you use other methods to group the students for the debate?
Lesson Notes

After we have clearly established the expectations and clarified the process for the day, I give each group five minutes to get themselves prepared and organized to present their debates for the rest of the class. It is interesting to watch because there were a few different approaches taken during the planning and development process of the two days prior. Some groups had both positions of their assigned topic do research and planning together as a whole, while others had the different positions on the topic research and plan exclusively of one another. When the groups are preparing at this point in the lesson today, there are small indicators of these differences.

About This Strategy
prep time:
Moderate
Grade Level: Eighth grade
Teaching Challenge: Ask Probing Questions and Engage in Student-led Inquiry
Nicholas Gearing
Boulder Creek High School
Anthem, AZ
Artifacts
Students In Action
Lesson File:Classroom Video: Student Self-Assessment
In this professional video, Nicholas explains post-debate student reflections.
Students In Action
Lesson File:Classroom Video: Student Ownership
In this professional video, Nicholas explains what students do during the time he gives them to prepare for the debate and how it allows students to take ownership of what they need to accomplish. Also in the video, students engage in a group to prepare for a debate. Lastly, Nicholas explains how he groups the students.
Students In Action
Lesson File:Classroom Video: Debate
In this professional video, a student delivers an opening speech for her group during the debate.