Discussion Stoplight

 

This tool was originally developed by Michelle Salgado and Carolyn Colley, and the version posted here was designed by Kaia Tomokiyo. It highlights three kinds of contributions young students often make during class discussions (repeating ideas, adding on to ideas, and proposing new ideas) and helps students reflect on which they are doing, facilitating greater awareness of how their contributions relate to those from other students. The tool can be used in several ways during a discussion — the teacher may point to what a student is doing, ask a student to point to what he or she is doing, or make tallies next to the tool so the class can see the kinds of contributions they are collectively making over time.

How might you use/adapt this tool? Are there other kinds of contributions you’d want to recognize? (For instance, a first-grade teacher recently shared that she added “countering” an idea because she wanted to recognize when students disagreed.)

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