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Habits of Discussion

Carol Bush
Professional Development Specialist
Center for School Improvement & Professional
Development
Orleans/Niagara BOCES

Benefits of Habits of Discussion


(HOD)
Across
Subject
Areas

Rigor &
Engagem
ent

College
and
Career
Readines
s

Teamwork

Case Study 1: Ms. X


In what ways does the teacher
prompt the students?
What are the limitations of Ms. Xs
facilitation of the discussion? What
actions does she take that lower the
rigor of the conversation?

Case Study 2: Ms. Settles


In what ways does Ms. Settles prompt the
students?
What actions does Ms. Settles take to keep
the students doing the heavy lifting and
thinking in this conversation?
What are the differences between the two
teachers?

Case Study 2: Ms. Settles


In what ways does Ms. Settles prompt
the students?
What actions does Ms. Settles take to
keep the students doing the heavy
lifting and thinking in this
conversation?
What are the differences between the
two teachers?

What are the differences?

Ms. X

Habits of Discussion: CORE IDEAS


Change the way students talk about reading, and
youll change the way they think about it.

Change the way you talk about reading,


and youll change the way students do.
Avoid leading discussions,
and students will do the heavy lifting.

Roadblocks
What are the roadblocks to effective habits of
discussion?

What are the Roadblocks to HOD?


Common [and false!] teacher assumptions:
Students cant facilitate these discussions
and prompt other students effectively.
This type of structure is impossible to
replicate.
There is little to no value in peer-to-peer
interaction.
Teachers lose control when the shift the
conversation to students.

So how do we get there?


Learning to
Share
Students learn to share
the floor during
conversations. They
begin to realize that a
discussion requires
participation on
everyones part.

Learning
to to
Build
Students learn
elaborate on the
details of a
conversation
whether thats
clarifying their own
responses or building
off of anothers.

Which habits go where?


Using the cards provided, categorize
each habit of discussion into the
learning to share phase or the
learning to build phase.

Habits of Discussion
Learning to Share

Listen and talk only in


turn
Speak audibly
Speak in complete
sentences
Interact peer to peer

Learning
Elaborate on
toyour
Build
answer
Build off others
answers
Evaluate others
responses
Praise your peers
Prompt peers with
universal prompts
Hint, dont tell
No hands
Lead
Come prepared in

Identifying habits of discussion in


action
Which habits of discussion can you
find evidence of in Ms. Settles
lesson?
Based on the scope and sequence
provided, what grade level do you
think this is?

When implemented well


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Evidence of
Student
Learning
Students
expand each
others
thinking
Students
own the
discussion
Respectful and
meaningful
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