Tuesday, May 22, 2012
In Praise of silence... some musing on pair work.
An ex-colleague and I used to disagree over whether it was better to put students into pairs immediately, or let them look at something on their own first, and then pair them up. He used to ask students to work alone first but I was of the opinion that getting them into pairs asap was always good; they could check they’d understood the task, work collaboratively, help each other; it’s a learning process not a test I would say. But I’ve been thinking about this again. Maybe students think at different speeds. Maybe they need some time to work out what is going on, to gather their thoughts. Maybe the quiet ones have just not had enough time to think. Maybe STT should stand for student thinking time. Maybe I was scared of the silence that thinking time would bring.