Sunday, July 16, 2017

Accountable Talk

Accountable Talk is "talk that is meaningful, respectful, and mutually beneficial to both speaker and listener. It stimulates higher-order thinking which, in turn, helps students to learn, reflect on their learning and communicate their knowledge and understanding."- Education Bureau of Hong Kong

A few years ago, the district that I teach in really started to focus on the importance of student-led conversation and the power that reflecting on and communicating one's individual learning can actually have on individual and peer learning experiences. When accountable talk was first introduced to me, I immediately fell in love with what it represented-student ownership.

Teachers are really good at talking. Talking means we are the ones in control. However, when students take over the conversation, they are the ones in control of their learning experiences, and that is something that I have been so proud to support and watch unfold in our classroom over the past few years.

I like to use visuals to help introduce accountable talk each year and to use as a reference for us throughout the year. Talking about what we are thinking does not always come naturally so we often use the visuals of sentence stems to help get our conversations going or support them when they are stalling.

These are by no means the only sentence stems out there, but they are a good starting place. Feel free to use this resource that I created for our classroom! Some ways that you could use it in your classroom is to print, laminate and cut in the smallest size and attach to a binder ring so that can be passed out to students during group talks or post on the wall for easy reference. I updated it to match the popular "cactus" theme that seems to be floating around the education social media sphere this year. Hope you can use this, and happy talking!


If you want to learn more about Accountable Talk, this website has some great information!

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