Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Peer Teaching

I really didn't teach much today, my students did most of it!

We're taking a break from our Daily 6 reading groups this week but I still wanted to do something, so I thought it would be fun to combine Readers' Theater and science.  I choose 5 oviparous animals and then wrote short scripts about them.  Pairs of students were assigned 1 of those animals to learn about and then teach their peers about.  
Reading their scripts together and then taking notes about what to teach their peers.
The teaching focused on 5 questions: What is the animal?  What are the babies called?  Where are the eggs laid?  When are the eggs laid?   How much time do the babies spend in their eggs?  "Teachers" were also able to tell their "students" other facts they learned from their scripts. It was fun to incorporate 'close reading' which involved students going back to the text to find or make sure of their answers when taking notes. 

The 2 "teachers" teaching their group about turtles and the "students" taking notes. 
I modeled the entire process (learning and teaching) with the help of one of my students.  We read our script about salmon aloud for everyone and then I talked aloud as we were close reading and taking notes.  My student teacher was our "student" and it prepared kids very well!  Here is that script for FREE.

It was so FUN to hand the reigns over to my students today!  The most interesting part was debriefing between each teaching about how it went for the teachers.  Many kids told me it was hard to teach when some of their students were talking too much....boy I know what that feels like!   I think this experience really empowered them and I have a feeling it was the topic of conversation at many dinner tables tonight.

Check out the entire unit:

This is the perfect time of year for Peer Teaching and I can't wait to do more!

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