Implementing Critical Conversations: Digging Deep into History and Thinking Critically about our World. Danielle Hance – Lake Murray Elementary, Chapin, SC [email protected] PhD Candidate- Language and Literacy- USC TAHSC Participant 2007, 2008-2011 NBCT- Literacy October 24, 2008.
Danielle Hance – Lake Murray Elementary, Chapin, SC
PhD Candidate- Language and Literacy- USC
TAHSC Participant 2007, 2008-2011
October 24, 2008
~ You may have heard of Inquiry Discussions (Jr. Great Books), Seminar Dialogue (Paideia), or Socratic Seminar before…
~ Critical conversations are essentially the same thing.
to get students to think critically, connect with history and the world around them, and engage in meaningful conversations.
~ All Students are engaged with one another.
~ The conversation is rich and varied.
~ They are exploring critical ideas deeply.
~ The teacher is initially a coach and a part-time participant, and becomes an observer.
~ Determine a theme, concept, text, photograph, poem, painting etc. that you would like the students to discuss critically.
~ You want to pick a topic that can be viewed from multiple angles and discussed critically.
~ Consider the why and what if questions in history, as well as the injustices.
~ Have them answer 2-3 critical thinking question on paper to prepare for the discussion.
~ Students should be trained on how to…
~ Speak to the silence
~ Connect to the previous speaker
(I agree…, I see what “John” meant by…)
~ Politely disagree
(I see where “John” got that idea, but I thought…)
~ Participate but not dominate
~ Engage with one another and not look to the teacher
I would suggest using
The fish bowl method
The first time you
engage in a critical
with your class.
Half the class are participants and half are observers.
~ When this sort of discourse is taught it become habit!
~ Students will begin to speak to the group, connect to others ideas, and think critically in other settings.
~ I use a lot of picture books as a springboard to critical conversations.
~ We tend to engage in a formal critical conversation at the end of a social studies unit. The conversation serves as a synthesis of all that we have studied through the lens of critical questions.
Ansel Adams created a book titled:
Born Free and Equal, Photographs of the Loyal Japanese-Americans at Manzanar Relocation Center
~ Is the Constitution an elitist document?