Focus on Making Meaning

Goal for this session:  NGSS Practices require social interaction and discourse as everyday classroom activities. In this session, you will plan full class discussions where students share their thinking and reasoning as they make sense of their classroom work.

Download this Study Guide (pdf)

Prepare - See how class discussion “makes thinking visible” and helps students grapple with their ideas.

  1. Get to know the Make Meaning Discussion Planning Tool (docx).  Study the Example (pdf) of a filled-in tool that was used to design the make meaning discussion for Investigating Water Transformations Investigation 4.
  2. View the Talk Science video Why is Talk Important?
  3. Find the Talk Science Primer, a good source for digging deeper, now or later.

Use the Planning Tool

  1. Select a lesson from your current curriculum.
  2. What aspect of students’ work will benefit from discussion?  Would the purpose of the discussion be to elicit ideas? construct explanations? analyze or interpret data? Or to consolidate learning by discussing what they did, why they did it, and what they found out?
  3. Complete the Make Meaning Discussion Planning Tool (docx).

Discuss in Your PLC

With your colleagues, share your Make Meaning Discussion Planning Tool.  Discuss questions and challenges.  Provide feedback and support.

Plan your next steps.