Do You Have 21st-Century Skills to Help Your Students Succeed?
Do Your Students Have 21st-Century Skills to Think for Themselves?
The Power of the Socratic Classroom has the answers you are looking for—answers that will supply the strategies to show students how to succeed into the future. A future that has unknown products, unidentified jobs, and unanticipated challenges.
In Socratic Seminar, teachers shift to the role of facilitator, where they help their students develop the collaborative interpersonal skills, the critical and creative thinking skills, and the speaking and listening skills to face the upcoming challenges of the 21st century.
Charles Fischer has taught in public and private schools in a variety of settings, from rural Maine to inner city Atlanta. In the past 20 years, he has worked with a wide range of students from 4th grade to AP English and has been nominated for Teacher of the Year four times. He has his Master’s degree in Teaching & Learning from the University of Southern Maine, and received his B.A. in English Literature and Creative Writing from Binghamton University. His latest book, The Power of the Socratic Classroom, has won four awards, including the NIEA Best Education Book. His first novel, Beyond Infinity, won a 2014 Independent Publisher Book Award bronze medal (YA fiction). His areas of expertise are Socratic Seminar, Active Listening, Inquiry, Teaching & Learning, and Critical & Creative Thinking. He is currently working on a book of poetry, a short story collection, and several novels.
Preparing the text for dialogue during pre-seminar is the single best way to increase student participation. Another reliable technique is to ask a new question, use a turn-and-talk, and then ask to hear from someone who hasn't spoken yet. Truly quiet students need personal help to find their voices. I often meet with them outside of class and make a plan for what they could say in the next discussion.
The Power of the Socratic Classroom
By far, the number one reason I have found is that students simply don’t know what to say at any given time. Many conversations move too quickly for some students and they struggle because they do not have enough relevant things to say. The main solution to get students participating is to spend more time in the pre-seminar stage. With more annotations, questions, and potential ideas, students will have more relevant material to share in the dialogue.