Reflection: "Zebra"Socratic Circle and QAR Questions - Section 4: "Zebra" Socratic Seminar


Only four students are participating in the fishbowl at once? Where's the engagement? 


There's more to engagement than actively participating in the discussion. There is value in listening to others discuss.  By listening to others, students can see questions being posed and answered with responses  and observations from other students. They can see discussions that go off topic being brought back in a way that supports and encourages, rather than shames. They can see others acknowledge information from others.


They can also evaluate the effectiveness of their peers' claims and reasoning. In a discussion that they are participating in, they're more likely thinking about what they will say next, rather than analyzing what is being said.  They can evaluate how the fishbowl is presenting--if they are using appropriate eye contact and volume.  When the fishbowl groups were discussing too quietly, many students got frustrated because they couldn't hear.  That didn't always lead to them speaking loudly, but again, it's a process.  It's a very valuable process for both the groups in the fishbowl as well as the outer circle.

  But. . . Only Four Kids Are Participating. . .
  But. . . Only Four Kids Are Participating. . .
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"Zebra"Socratic Circle and QAR Questions

Unit 4: Analyzing Literature in Socratic Circles with Chaim Potuk’s “Zebra”
Lesson 3 of 11

Objective: Students will be able to analyze elements of a story and cite evidence by effectively engage in a fishbowl Socratic circle.

Big Idea: Students pose questions , acknowledge alternate views, and follow rules for collegial discussions through a fishbowl Socratic seminar.

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