Friday, December 6, 2013

Connecting with Common Core - Collaborative Discussion

Students in A-4 today enjoyed connecting with the Common Core State Standards through collaborative group discussion about the novel Seedfolks by Paul Fleischman.  After reading several chapters of the novel--while annotating and citing evidence of character's growth and transformation--students were given the challenge to come up with questions addressing different levels of questioning using Bloom's Taxonomy and Costa's Levels of questioning to prepare for collaborative group discussion.  Students wrote questions on index cards and noted which level each question addressed.  Then, in teams a group facilitator initiated the discussion choosing students to read questions, while tracking progress of students who asked questions, answered questions, and listened attentively.  Students took turns asking questions and called on their team members to answer their questions, often citing evidence or agreeing/disagreeing with their peers to show depth of thought and analysis.  After discussing the spectrum of low to high level questions, students exchanged index cards with partners and completed a writing task answering their partner's questions in writing on the back of their cards.  What a fantastic day--it was such a joy to be a "silent witness" to the deep and thoughtful conversation that was all student-led!  Enjoy the photos/videos below and check out another classroom engaged in collaborative discussion here!

(Sorry that the videos are sideways...)

Written Reflection at the end: