Talking Pencils

Student Contributor: E. Adkisson
Giving students the time to have meaningful discussions with sentence frames will teach them how to share their opinions with others. The sentence frames will help guide the conversation when there is a difference in opinions,

The talking pencil tool is helpful because students will be in groups of 3-4 and the teacher will pose a question for each student to answer. In order to share their opinion students must place their pencils in the middle of the group. It is important for the teacher to provide a range of sentence frames for students to refer to throughout the discussion. Examples of the sentence frames could be, “I believe my thoughts are correct because…” ” I agree with.. because of…”. When there is a difference in opinion it is important for students to understand how to have a respectful discussion and get their thoughts out. These sentence frames might look like, ” Thank you, I don’t disagree with what you said but what about…?” “I liked your answer but disagree, here’s why..”

I placed the talking pencil tool in the preventive phase because it is teaching students how to have conversations with others who have a different opinion from theirs. This is an important tool for students to learn because they will encounter many people who disagree and they should be able to have tough conversations. This tool also helps build relationship skills between peers and life skills like courage and friendship. This tool could also be placed in the corrective phase because this activity is supporting students' opinions and how they can effectively communicate with others. Teachers can check the student's understanding of this tool by walking around the classroom and monitoring kind talk.

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Tool Source: Marilee Sprenger

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