The Common Core State Standards for English ELA and Mathematics emphasize improving the quality of student-to-student discourse as a major feature of instruction. The new standards specifically describe the importance of students understanding the reasoning of others and engaging in meaningful conversations using evidence for claims. Yet this type of student-to-student discourse tends to be rare in classrooms. Common classroom activities such as whole class discussions, jigsaws, and think-pair-shares, can have the appearance of constructive interactions, but they often do not provide adequate opportunities for all students to engage in academically rich, back-and-forth dialogs.
This short (and free!) course, provided online through Stanford University, looks closely at student-to-student discourse and addresses how to facilitate student engagement in the types of interactions required by the new standards.
In order to participate in the course, you will need to have access to a classroom in which you or the teacher you are observing are able to collect short samples of paired student talk two different times.
The course runs Monday, Oct. 21, 2013 through Monday, Dec. 9, 2013. Don't miss this amazing opportunity to learn from some of the nation's best researchers around English Language learners. Register today!