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A Reflective Teacher Tool

How is the classroom arranged? The students are typically paired or grouped to work together while the teacher facilitates the process.
Who is directing the classroom activities? The teacher facilitates classroom activity.
Most activities require only guidance from the teacher.
Where is the teacher spending their time? The teacher walks around the classroom during all activities, watching and listening to student-to-student discourse.
The teacher monitors the students to keep them on task, while the students actively work together on an activity.
Who is doing the math? The students do the thinking and the work.
What type of questions is the teacher asking? The teacher asks thought-provoking questions that require students to explain their thinking and processes.
Who is explaining and justifying the answers? Students are required to make presentations, explaining their progress within the activity.
The majority of discourse is student-to-student discourse.
When and how does the teacher provide information to the students? The teacher encourages students to construct knowledge. Prior knowledge is assessed as new concepts emerge.
During the lesson, the teacher systematically brings the class together on several occasions, assuring that the mathematics of the lesson are understood.
When a student has mastered the material or completed the assignment quickly, how does the teacher respond? Scaffold instruction for all students. Be prepared with extension and connection activities for students who master the material quickly or finish early.
When a student struggles, how does the teacher respond? If a student is having difficulty understanding something, even after consulting with his or her group members, the teacher asks the group leading questions to guide them to the desired outcome.
The teacher may also provide additional resources such as visuals and word banks that are culturally responsive to aid comprehension.


As you reflect more on collaborative classroom strategies, take time to read this article entitled, "Never Say Anything a Kid Can Say!" by Steven C. Reinhart.