The Teacher Tip
Ask More Questions Instead of Giving Answers
March 6, 2018
Adapted from Thinking Together by Rozlynn Dance & Tessa Kaplan.
We teach our students that when someone asks us for help, we must act as a math “coach,” asking questions when someone is stuck or struggling instead of giving answers. As a class, we brainstorm questions we could ask or things we could do to help our partner without “robbing” them of their thinking. We chart the students’ suggestions and refer back to them often. We add to the chart throughout the year when we hear effective partner or group discussions.
We practice these routines repeatedly in the beginning of the year by having partnerships or groups work on a short task together and then bringing the whole class together to reflect briefly on how it went.
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