Each day, I begin my ELA class with Reading Time. This is a time for students to access a range of texts. I use this time to conference with students, collect data on class patterns and trends with independent reading and to provide individualized support.
Today students will be presenting their argumentative dialogues they have been working on for a few lessons. Students will work on both their listening and speaking skills in class today.
Many times during presentations, the rest of class loses focus and their minds drift. I think it's important to keep this in mind and give students a way to engage in presentations as they are listening to them. This helps students not only work on their listening skills but can help further the big idea of the lesson. In this case, the big idea is argumentative writing. With that in mind students will be taking notes as the presentations are occurring. By forcing them to take notes, they focusing their thinking on the presentations which allows them to be more engaged.
I begin by handing out the Audience Work For Argument Presentations handout. This handout has students think about the criteria of argumentative writing as their peers are presenting their dialogues. I explain each one so students understand what each one means. Depending on the class, students can either take notes on each one or divide the work amongst their group. For students who need tasks broken down it can help to assign one or two criteria as they are listening.
When students present their work to the class, the rest of class will be taking notes based on the criteria. This allows students to engage more in the presentation where there is specific areas they are looking for.
Here is an example of those student notes: Audience Work Argument Presentations Student Notes.
There is then some variety as to what teachers can do with the notes. They can collect them and count as a grade or perhaps a homework assignment. They can also be used as a way to foster discussion. I had students share their notes with a partner as the next group was getting ready to present. This also helped with issues like classroom management so students can get their presentations ready.
The rest of class time is devoted to students presenting their argumentative dialogues.
Students perform these scripts in front of the class. As students are presenting and reading their scripts, students that are observing are reminded that they are listening for a purpose. As students are presenting, the rest of the class is listening to determine the criteria of argumentative writing and how each group presented those criteria. When students are presenting, they are working on the speaking skills of volume, pacing, and enunciation. These are real world skills that students will need them as they continue their education.
During this time I am assessing students on their presentations. I use the Dialogue Assessment Spreadsheet to assess students on their public speaking skills. This rubric is rather straight forward and makes the process of grading the presentations so much easier. It's hard to grade presentations during class for me because I am so focused on the actually presentation so I try and make it as streamlined as possible.
Here are two examples of student performances:
Here are the scripts for those performances: