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Socratic Seminar Expectations

What it is, expectations

Nicole Green

on 30 October 2014

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Transcript of Socratic Seminar Expectations

Socratic Seminar
Who is Socrates?
Socrates was a Greek philosopher (469 BC-399 BC) who believed that people should do their own thinking and questioning.
Socratic Seminars are named after Socrates because like the philosopher, they encourage genuine discussion, dialogue, debate, and deep thinking.
Socratic Method/Socratic Seminar
A Socratic Seminar is a discussion between EVERYONE in the class about a specific text.

The goal is not to "get it right" or find the "correct" answer, but to discuss, reflect, and ask questions.
What is a Socratic Seminar?
A Socratic Seminar involves everyone in the class - you are the participants.

There is one discussion leader who guides discussion and responses. In the future, this will be one of you, but for today, I'll model the leader role.

It is a dialog not an argument.
What does a Socratic Seminar look like?
Here is an example of a Socratic Seminar. As we watch, I want you to pay attention to how students discuss and interact. When the video is over, I will ask you to describe what you saw.
Asking questions
During a Socratic Seminar what should our expectations be for ourselves and each other?
Only one person talks at a time.
But that means that you have to be patient and respectful of others' thoughts and ideas.
Participation is necessary.
Base your thoughts on something in the text. Always.
No hand raising - this is a conversation.
Inquiry is key!
Asking questions before and during the Socratic Seminar is essential!
But our goal isn't "yes" and "no" questions. That gets boring!
Good questions for a Socratic Seminar are "open ended."
"How" and "why" questions are the best way to avoid a dead end in discussion.
Let's get started!
Full transcript