- After students have written, consider ways to have them read and respond to each other’s responses. For example, you could (with students’ permission) print out responses and have the class do a gallery walk responding to different viewpoints.
- Try using a discussion protocol to increase safety, generate a range of perspectives, and deepen students’ understanding. For example, have students take part in small-group discussions with roles. You can find more discussion protocols here.
- Provide students with sentence stems for productive discussion. For example:
- I agree that _________, but I disagree that _____.
- Could you say more about ______?
- What evidence would you give to support the idea that ______?
- In my experience, it’s not true that _________.
- As a follow-up to a tough discussion, consider assigning a Quick Write to ask students for their thoughts on the reading and resulting discussion, and use their responses to plan for the next time you introduce a sensitive topic. Some questions you can ask:
- Did students enjoy the reading?
- Did students feel the assignments connected to it were worthwhile?
- Did students find the resulting discussions to be safe and productive?
- Are there any norms or questions students would like to see the next time the class tackles a sensitive issue?
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