Welcome to our new monthly discussions on EDEQUITY. Today we begin a
discussion on Strategies for Equitable Teacher-Student Interactions for
the month of June. As we indicated earlier, this discussion will be
slightly different from the previous Dialogues on EDEQUITY. We will
continue to post regular EDEQUITY messages to the list along with the
messages for the discussion. Messages related to the discussion will
have [EDEQUITY Discussion] as a subject header. To allow for broad
participation from the members of the list, please limit your messages
to TWO per DAY. If you send more than that, we will return them.
We encourage you to join in the discussion this month and then let us
know what you think about the new format. We look forward to your
Discussion on Strategies for Equitable Teacher-Student Interactions
Teaching strategies are at the heart of what makes the classroom an
exciting place to learn. We know that there are countless strategies
that help to engage students. To get the discussion started, here are
ten strategies that have been proven effective in increasing and
developing equitable interactions among students and teachers. This
list is excerpted from the WEEA Equity Resource Center's on-line course
"Engaging Middle School Girls in Math and Science" but these strategies
have proven to be effective in a wide range of classrooms.
1. Provide "wait time"; that is, time for students to think before
2. Actively seek participation from students who contribute
infrequently. Try to build some out-of-class time with one or two
different students every day just to chat and break through barriers.
3. Arrange students in cooperative groups and try single-gender groups
for some situations (especially for computers).
4. Be sure to circulate to the girls' seats or area when they're
arranged in single-gender groups.
5. Praise and reprimand anyone who deserves it, every time such a
response is called for, without exceptions.
6. In follow-up comments, give girls and boys the same level of
prodding and continual questioning to push their thinking further.
7. If you can't get a good mix of responses by gender when students
call out, establish a code for taking turns to speak (raising hands),
and explain why you are enforcing it. Then, when students do call out,
try not to accept their answers, regardless of gender.
8. Be aware of your facial expressions when girls and boys are
speaking; listen intently to both, and try to make an extra effort not
to allow interruptions when girls are speaking. Pay attention to
student facial expressions so that you can identify kids who are not yet
understanding or who appear disengaged.
9. Actively solicit alternative methods that students have used to
solve problems, and encourage them to share and discuss.
10. Reward students for finding and pointing out your mistakes--it
keeps them attentive. This strategy is also useful for students with
disabilities, such as Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD).
Please share some of the strategies that you have used to engage girls,
and all students, particularly those that have addressed
student-to-student interactions and teacher-to-student interactions.
Or discuss some of your experiences in trying any of the strategies
listed above. How have your students reacted differently toward each
other? How have they reacted differently toward you?
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