This is the second part of our lesson on Shared Inquiry Discussion. In our previous lesson, we have read the folktale entitled "The Wedding Basket" twice with different purposes. We took post it notes and derived interpretive questions from them. At the conclusion of the previous lesson, we chose an interpretive questions to lead this shared inquiry discussion: "Why does the man not see anything in the basket, while the woman sees something ?"
I focus on the shared Inquiry discussion rules and procedures that is on the Shared Inquiry Flipchart. We analyze the Shared Inquiry Discussion Rubric to understand what is expected during a shared inquiry discussion. I ask students to demonstrate an example of each of the areas: Content, Speaking & Reasoning, Listening, and Knowledge of Text and Preparation. We discuss the difference in performance levels for each area and role play examples and non-examples. I repeat this process with each Shared Inquiry lesson to ensure that students are all on the same page.
If students are familiar with the Shared Inquiry process, I conduct Reciprocal Teaching during the flip chart presentation and ask a student to present to the class. This keeps the lesson engaging even though the flip chart is repeated in all my Shared Inquiry lessons. I feel that repetition is needed because my students need constant reinforcement during this complex task.
After the interpretive question is introduced, students sit in circular formation on the floor with their books facing one another. My role is to facilitate the discussion. Once students improve on their performance, I can choose a leader to help facilitate the discussion. One student answers the question and refers to the section in the text that supports his answer. The next student can agree or disagree with the answer by also using text supports as evidence. This discussion continues until all students have a chance to share their interpretation and perspectives about the characters or other elements in this folktale. At the end of the discussion, some students will share if their views have changed from prior the discussion and why or why not.
Having this type of discourse uses higher order thinking skills. Students discuss multiple perspectives from the same story and re-evaluate their own findings based on ideas presented logically and persuasively by other students.
Students self-assess their role in Shared Inquiry discussion by completing the Shared Inquiry Rubric (see source). They discuss their performance and ways to improve specific areas. Students also discuss their progress and accomplishments.
Self-assessment is a necessary part of learning because it allows for reflection on learning styles, intended and unintended results, modifying goals, scaffolding knowledge to a higher level, etc. It allows the teacher to gain insight on students' perspectives as well.