The Teacher Talk Advantage is helping educators all across the country develop more effective forms of communication. Based on the highly successful book, The Teacher Talk Advantage: Five Voices of Effective Teaching, this 18-hour workshop guides educators through a series of exercises which identify words that empower and words that wound.
With simple techniques, such as The One-Minute Behavior Modifier, an educator or administrator can quickly bring a student's attention to an inappropriate behavior and then immediately state the behavior or action the educator wishes to see exhibited by the student. This technique provides an opportunity for the adult to show up as a instructor, rather than criticizer, by addressing the situation rather than the character of the student.
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“Let’s have a whip around!”
Another technique that works well to structure student responses and encourage involvement is the whip-around.
"Let's start at the end of this row and whip-around to Sarah in the back. Each person give a one-sentence reply telling what you think is the most important thing in this chapter. Remember that it's OK to pass."
Students go in turn up one row and down another, each giving his or her response. It is not necessary to whip-around the entire classroom. Just a portion will do. Alternate where you begin and end so everyone is included from time to time.
“No hands in the air, only writing.”
"I'm going to pose a question," Josh began. "I want you to write your answer on your risk pad. No hands in the air. If you are done writing before I call on anyone, see if you can expand on your answer. Who, in your opinion, was the most important character in the story and why do you think that? Please keep your answer to yourself. Silently record it on your risk pad. No hands in the air."
Josh's Teacher Talk was so smooth that it would be easy to pass over the strength inherent in the structure. His verbal skill and intentionally chosen words created the following: