Best Practice

Encouraging talking in the classroom

Pedagogy Skills
Many students can be reluctant to speak in lessons but talking confidently is a key skill that we must be encouraging. Adam Riches looks at how we can help young people to find their voices

If we were to ask pupils about the most daunting tasks in school, among them would be speaking in lessons.
For the quiet members of the class, the idea of speaking sparks anxiety and fear and even the most confident pupil can worry about putting their heads above the proverbial parapet when it comes to class discussions.

The problem with this is that pupils need to learn how to speak, discuss and debate, not least because classroom talk is such a powerful way of learning. So how can we as teachers encourage pupils to speak more and with confidence?

A key feature of any discussion in class is specific key terms. These differ from subject to subject (of course) but they are an essential part of building confidence in pupils. The best way to integrate these is to have rich discussions around ideas.

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