Less Tech, More Talk

flickr photo by Infomastern http://flickr.com/photos/infomastern/14519782386 shared under a Creative Commons (BY-SA) license

flickr photo by Infomastern http://flickr.com/photos/infomastern/14519782386 shared under a Creative Commons (BY-SA) license

Te@chThought has an interesting piece on using the Harkness method in the classroom.

Less Tech, More Talk: Moving To A Discussion-Based Classroom

by Emily Long

“Sometimes I feel like the integration of new technology in the classroom is being pushed on me from all sides.

And though I may not fall into the “neo-luddite” category, I don’t believe that new technology is the answer to keeping students engaged in their education. I think that stems from a genuine love of learning. Of course therein lies the real question: how do you get students to love learning? While I certainly don’t claim to have figured out the entire answer, I have noticed several things that seem to consistently boost students’ engagement.

For instance, incorporating discussion-based learning has made a considerable difference in how students at my school view their time in the classroom. I hear kids say that they wish all of their classes used this style of teaching because they get so much out of it. Here is a look at how we have implemented the Harkness method in our school and the impact it has had on the students.

What is the Harkness Method?

The Harkness method of teaching and learning is a discussion-based education method involving small groups of students (usually 8-12) seated around an oval table to share thoughts and ideas and to learn good reasoning and discussion skills. These discussions involve minimal interjection from instructors in order to encourage student engagement.” Read Emily Long’s entire piece here.

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