Dialogic Teaching

Chesterton has worked cliosely with the University of Cambridge over a number of years on research into dialogic teaching

Dialogic teaching harnesses the power of talk to stimulate and extend students’ thinking and advance their learning and understanding. It helps the teacher more precisely to diagnose students’ needs, frame their learning tasks and assess their progress. It empowers the student for lifelong learning and active citizenship. Dialogic teaching is not just any talk. It is as distinct from the question-answer and listen-tell routines of traditional teaching as it is from the casual conversation of informal discussion. It requires:

* interactions which encourage students to think, and to think in different ways

* questions which invite much more than simple recall

* answers which are justified, followed up and built upon rather than merely received

* feedback which informs and leads thinking forward as well as encourages

* contributions which are extended rather than fragmented

* exchanges which chain together into coherent and deepening lines of enquiry

* discussion and argumentation which probe and challenge rather than unquestioningly accept

* professional engagement with subject matter which liberates classroom discourse from the safe and conventional

* classroom organisation, climate and relationships which make all this possible.

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