Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Response to Shelby: How can teachers and students help encourage, and make less intimidating, participation in class?

I think one way is to not instantly shoot down a student if they say the wrong thing. That is one way to ensure a student never participates again. Beyond that, I always feel most comfortable to respond when one person isn’t dominating a conversation. Sometimes, one student has so many ideas and comments that either no one else can get a word in, or you don’t want to sound dumb to this apparently very knowledgeable student, so you allow them to continue dominating the discussion. I’ve always felt most comfortable with laid-back situations, and discussions that include personal responses with personal experience. Also, teachers that don’t randomly call on students also allow for a comfortable atmosphere in which students want to participate in. Cold calling on students can make them embarrassed, and make the rest of the class very nervous.

When is cold calling on students appropriate?

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