Teaching and Learning Strategies for the Thinking Classroom

By Alan Crawford; Wendy Saul et al. | Go to book overview

EIGHTH CORE LESSON: CRITICAL
LISTENING
Critical listening is the application of critical thinking skills to the process of listening to someone orally present a position on a topic. It is very closely related to critical reading, but with one important exception. When one reads critically, it is possible to read several times. When one listens critically, it is often necessary to capture all of the meaning in a single event. In a political speech or a debate, for example, there may be no repetition of what was said.
HOW TO READ THIS LESSON
As you read the following demonstration lesson, please bear in mind that its purpose is to demonstrate teaching methods (and not to teach you about the Kyoto Protocol). Think about this lesson in two ways.
1. First imagine that you are a student who is participating in this lesson. What is your experience? What kind of thinking are you doing? What are you learning?
2. Then think yourself into the role of the teacher who is leading the lesson. What are you doing? Why are you doing it? How are you handling the three phases of the lesson: anticipation, building knowledge, and consolidation?

LESSON

The anticipation phase is the art of the lesson that activates prior knowledge, prepares the students for learning, and sets out the purposes of the lesson. Here we use the Fishbowl with Enhanced Lecture and M-Chart.

The teacher explains to the students that he will present a brief oral argument about a controversial issue, the Kyoto Treaty on Global Warming. The teacher selects six students to serve as the audience in the Fishbowl. The other students will surround and observe them as they listen to the oral argument and then as they evaluate it among themselves.

The teacher reminds the Fishbowl group about the M-Chart and the questions presented in the Seventh Core Lesson on Understanding Arguments: he should provide this in a handout or write it on the chalk board for reference:

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