Get Students Talking First
Joanne Paul advises, “Get students talking before you do. In seminars this means I start with an “attendance question” – a general opinion-based question on the readings that I ask every student as I do the attendance list.
This is a great way to ease students into the seminar topic and to get them thinking and talking without too much pressure on any one individual. It also means that right from the start all students have had the chance to participate. As a teacher, you also then have a sense of how the students have fared with that session’s content: are they answering confidently or do they seem confused about what they think, for example? Try it in your teaching, and let us know how it works out!
Dr Joanne Paul is a Lecturer in Early Modern History at the University of Sussex. Her latest book, Thomas More, is available now.
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