Something I am struggling with in my class is having students talk with each other about topics we are discussing. I find that even when I model how to buddy talk and we practice how to buddy talk, they never seem to stay on topic for more than a minute or two.
I realize the importance of talk in the classroom and I understand that as the teacher I should be the facilitator of this talk. I have noticed that when I teach I will try to keep things moving and squash discussion on topics if they are not completely directly related to what we are talking about and if they last longer than 30 seconds. My fear is that if I let them share for longer than 30 seconds than I will lose the other student’s attention.
I have also noticed that while I teach I will say things like ‘great job’ and ‘you got it’ instead of trying to probe further into their thinking and allowing them to verbalize their thoughts. Practicing metacognition is an important skill to obtain, yet I find that it is difficult to find time to allow such one on one talk with me. It is difficult for second graders to practice metacognition without proper prompting through questioning.
So then I try to formulate questions that allow them to think deeply and discuss with a partner for a few minutes. I want students to be independent enough to discuss topics on their own and I am wondering how to prepare second graders to do so?