Classroom discussion to enhance learning
At Self Development Academy, classroom discussion is one of the many tools used to form lifelong learners. Through classroom discussion, students engage and take an active role in critical thinking, information processing, and community building.
How is discussion achieved?
Teachers who prepare, develop, and lead engaging discussions find success on many levels. No matter the grade and subject, all classrooms can utilize discussion in one way or another:
- Round tables
- Role play
- Group projects
Pairing rigorous curriculum with the active participation of students in these types of activities leads to lively, engaged classrooms. Discussion also helps students who have not yet mastered concepts. Besides providing another way to learn the material, it allows students to interact, ask questions, and take a break from other more conventional teaching methods.
Consider these benefits to classroom discussion:
Develops critical thinking.
According to the Taylor Institute, classroom discussions enhance critical thinking development. Discussions “empower students to take the lead in exploring complex and challenging issues, and to transform their classroom spaces into participatory democracies.” Students gain new perspectives, learn to actively defend their positions, and wrestle with the challenge of disagreeing with their peers.
Discussions encourage students to follow their curiosities and those of their peers. While some discussions go down “rabbit holes” or get “off in the weeds,” this provides real-world experience for thinking about broad topics. What’s off in the weeds to one person might be a discovery of something new and beautiful to someone else.
Builds teamwork and community.
There is no way to participate in discussion alone. Built into the very foundation of a classroom discussion is the interaction and relationship building among students. Students must work through disagreements, insecurities, arrogance, conflicting personalities and communication styles and more to engage in discussion. It’s not only a lesson in the subject matter, but also in social practices.
If you’re looking for a school that understands the importance of classroom discussion, you’ve found the place! SDA is recognized as one of the best K-8 charter schools nationwide. We have campuses in Phoenix and Mesa. Find email and phone numbers here. We can’t wait to hear from you!