Take a look at the grid above. Four numbers, seemingly unrelated. Try to see if you can figure out which one doesn't belong? Much like the old Sesame Street song -
So, which did you choose:
Communication is crucial in classrooms
Getting students to talk in a classroom, usually isn't a problem. We often spend our days trying to figure out how to get students to talk less. What if, instead, we channeled their conversations into productive talk about their learning? What if they used academic vocabulary to explain precisely what they were learning and doing? In order for some students to process learning, they need to vocalize. Sometimes students learn more from conversations with their peers than with adults. Communication is a way for students to engage with other learners and the material being taught. It isn't enough though, just to talk, conversation needs to be targeted to learning and purposeful, where all students have the ability to respond and the inability to hide.
Communication must often be taught
Students today spend much of their time communicating online and through other media outlets, but rarely are taught how to communicate appropriately. Giving students stems to begin conversations also teachers them to respond or ask questions. Holding an expectation that students answer questions in complete sentences also increases the classroom discourse.
Communication can only be tested in the real world
No, there won't be a multiple choice or fill in the blank test that will see how well you taught your students to communicate, but for their future success, they deserve it. Most employers are looking for effective communicators; whether it be verbal or written communication.
Taking time to teach communication and incorporate it in your classroom could be a game changer for your students. Post those questions that invite critical thinking and discussion.
Instructional specialist/coach, Google Certified Trainer, Level 1 and 2 Google Certified educator, Ed Tech Team Teacher Leader Certified, growing and learning