The dialogic classroom




Quanstrom, Catherine

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The Dialogic Classroom is a response to research in recent decades that has produced evidence to support the use of classroom discourse as a tool for generating new ideas. Foundational and current research is discussed in order to show how acquiring this secondary, dominant discourse is important both for a student’s academic future and for his or her social inclusion. Dialogic practices that enable students and teachers to co-construct meaning are reviewed. The paper also discusses the requirements of the British Columbia English Language Arts curriculum. Currently students in Grades 8-12 are expected to use oral language to improve and extend thinking, to analyze and explore multiple viewpoints through speaking and listening and to use metacognition to self-assess and set goals for improvement. However, the purposeful instruction required is often absent. The paper recommends strategies to support the development both of dialogue in the classroom and of listening skills.



dialogue, dialogic, exploratory talk, Robin Alexander, secondary discourse, disciplinary discourse, high school, discourse, creating dialogic space