Student Responses - January 26, 2017

3 Ways to encourage responses from students

One of the big ideas of delivery instruction is to elicit frequent responses. An Opportunity to Respond (OTR) is an instructional question, statement, or gesture made by the teacher seeking an academic response from students (Sprick, Knight, Reinke, & McKale, 2006). As teachers, we often ask ourselves: How do we get students to share or opportunities to respond (OTR) in the classroom? Anita Archer, teacher, consultant, and co-author of Explicit Instruction: Effective and Efficient Teaching identifies 3 responses in which all students can respond.

Verbal Responses. Having students verbally give answers. Examples of how this could be done are: choral, partners, teams/groups, echo (repeat what is said by the teacher), or through a discussion.

Written Responses. Having students write down their answers. Examples of these could be done by: using whiteboards, an exit ticket, a graphic organizer, students writing a blog, or a vocabulary log.

Action Responses. Having students respond using action. Examples of these could be: response cards (yes or no)/response sheets such as clickers, Plickers (a simple tool to assess students without the need for student devices), hand signals such as “Fist to 5,” or acting out/simulations.

TResearch shows that when students are given multiple opportunities to respond, the following may occur:

  • Decrease in disruptive behavior
  • Increase in on-task behavior
  • Increase in number of correct responses
  • Limits student time of engaging in inappropriate behavior
  • Increase in rates of positive, specific feedback

Adapted from: Virginia Department of Education, (2011); MO SW-PBS (2008).

Identify opportunities within your lesson plans to increase opportunities for students to respond and replace single student responding through hand-raising with multiple students responding through some of the strategies noted above. Anita sums it up with: Teach with Passion, Manage with Compassion. How well you teach=How well they learn.

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