Kacy Stuber’s biology class has been working on exploring DNA and how the information contained there is translated into proteins and eventually traits. Difficult concepts to understand, much less explain. However, Mrs. Stuber encouraged her students to try the strategy 30 second expert to test their knowledge. Classroom discussion is one of our building level goals at Liberty North this year and each and every opportunity learners have to voice their understanding is a win. Sometimes, voicing a misconception is also a win. We often learn as much or more from what isn’t obvious and having a productive conversation.
We started this strategy small with less risky topics, “would you rather questions.” As students gained comfort in the strategy, we began to include information from labs and topics being covered in class. Students started by pairing with a classmate they were comfortable with and we have since branched out to larger groups and different classmates. Quick writes on post-its or a Canvas discussion board and sentence starters helped even reluctant students feel more comfortable with this quick discussion tool. Next time, I will plan to build comfort with this strategy earlier in the year to build classroom community and allow more use with various topics.
“It’s a good way to revisit information. You really have to listen and memorize when someone is talking to recap what they say.” - Avery (9th grade)