Teacher Education

4 Ways to Deepen Student Reflection

A short video clip highlighting four key ways to deepen thinking among students

Discover four easy changes you can make to encourage your teacher candidates to think differently and more deeply.


Debbie Lively:

I’m going to just talk about four ways that I think that I have worked with students for a long time to help them reflect on their teaching and reflect more deeply. Because students typically will answer things were like, “Oh yeah, that was a really good lesson. Oh yeah, I liked what I did, blah, blah, blah.” But it is, it’s just kind of a surface level kind of reflection.

And so I’d like them to think more deeply about it. And it’s taken me a lot of years to get to the point where I use some of these strategies more consistently. I mean, I do sometimes fall back and do some of the things that I probably should do, but these are the things that I would like to share with you that I have found very helpful for me. And one is using thinking routines. And I don’t know how many of you are familiar with thinking routines, but they support deeper reflection, thinking routines, really enhance that culture of thinking. Project Zero from Harvard. I do have a website and I also think it will be put in the chat a link to the site that you can go to. I really would encourage you to look at the different thinking routines that are suggested and look at some of they have video, and you can see it in action and so I’d like you to look at that.

But anyway, thinking routines do support deeper reflection. And I use them all the time in my courses and when I’m commenting on video in GoReact. The other thing is questioning is key gathering information. And I have really worked hard on the way that I question students and it has made a significant difference. I think the other thing, paraphrasing that helps them really feel that we’re understanding we’re listening, we’re using that active listening, but paraphrasing enhances that understanding instead of just saying, “Oh yeah, I agree.” Extend their thinking and then probing invites and promotes that deeper reflection.