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Thread: Question about Rhetoric Discussion Time/Socratic Discussion

  1. #1

    Question about Rhetoric Discussion Time/Socratic Discussion

    This is our third week using TOG. I have read through the section on The Loom about the differences between the Thinking and Accountability Questions as well as the section on the Socratic Discussion. I realize that it will take time to learn how to use the socratic method. Having said that, I am do you conduct these discussions? Do you go over the accountability questions in a way of hearing the students answers and bring out things they might have missed and then move on to the thinking questions? Do you just focus on the thinking questions? I am assuming the thinking questions are the ones where you will be more fully utilizing the socratic method. Do you go over material in the teacher's notes? Do you lecture? Do you have your student take notes during the lecture portion? Do you point out information from the teacher's notes/student's reading that you tell the student they will need to know (and thus would be covered on a test)? Do your students find any of this process boring?

    In these first three weeks, while we have had some good discussions, there have also been points when I go over material and you feel like yawning....some of it seems boring. Am I missing something? Or is it just that we are still in that adjustment/learning time frame and it will just take time to learn how it all works?

    I would really like to know how others conduct the discussion time with rhetoric level students.
    Thanks so much!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Lancaster County, PA
    I use the discussion guides. Sometimes they suggest you go over charts or specific facts and details. Sometimes it guides you to help them pull it all together. I don't specifically go over each accountability or thinking question unless my dd has something she noted that she really wants to share that I didn't ask about as promoted by the guide.

    Some of this depends on the year plan, too. Some weeks of yr 1 require you as the teacher to have read and digested the rest of the teacher notes in order to know what questions to really ask. Other weeks really do a good job of giving you the target you are shooting for in the discussion guide.

    I lecture only a a last resort or if the guide clearly tells me I will will have to do so. If dd can't quite answer something I think she should have gotten from her reading, we sometimes look back together, or I keep asking leading questions. It's not a perfect science so give yourself and your students plenty of grace!

    "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

  3. #3
    Thanks for sharing. It helps to hear how others do the discussion time.

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