Monday, August 27, 2012

watching how it ignites

I want to thank my good friend Ari for sharing his ideas on discussions with me:
When in the discussion, you want to discover, to have discoveries, to be surprised. If the conversation doesn't lead you to something surprising, it's a sign that things need to click better. All thinking leads to discoveries, to discoveries we didn't know existed beforehand. And a rich classroom discussion is the highest form of thinking: it's a bunch of brains coming together and bouncing ideas off each other...generating new ideas, building and exploring, but also beginning (and thus departing) from the same starting point—the assigned reading/text.

In short, we want to see where our ideas "go," how they change. We aren't mailing a letter into a mailbox and watching it disappear. We are tossing a log into a fire...and watching how it ignites.
I have highlighted a few keywords for us to think about as we begin our journey of discussions and discovery. Please add this post to your growing understanding of at the table.

What tips do you have for successful discussions? What do you feel will be easy for you, what will be challenging?

1 comment:

  1. Great post, J. :)

    I appreciate these lines the most ... "When in the discussion, you want to discover, to have discoveries, to be surprised...we want to see where our ideas "go," how they change." Wonderfully put.

    What a great opportunity for the kids to be heard, seen and to develop voice; to develop conviction and the discipline to listen, to take risks and to meaningfully contribute when they are ready.

    You have no idea how excited I am that we are trying this out as a team. I am learning and remembering and taking my own risks and it's been great watching the kids embrace it and witnessing the fire for 'the table' ignite for you too.