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Transcript of Socratic Seminars
Discussion NOT Debate
Marking the Text
Pick an authentic text to discuss!
What is a Socratic Seminar?
Form an Inner & Outer Circle
The inner circle talks.
The outer circle monitors the conversation.
Teachers can consider nominating a discussion leader.
What does the outer circle do?
Draw a circle and connect lines from each person to person in order to track the conversation.
What was the best point made during the seminar?
What ideas did you agree/ disagree with?
What did you contribute or wish you had said?
Number the Paragraphs
Circle Key Words
Mark Words You Don’t Know (define)
Underline author’s claims
Highlight Main Ideas
Mark + / - where text supports or does not support the argument
Write 2 Higher Level Thinking Questions!!!
presenting views with support from the source
listening to the views of others
helping students to explain and support their views
not an argument
Only participate if prepared
Use the text during the seminar
Listen carefully to other participants
Take turns speaking
Talk to each other, not just to the leader or teacher
Discuss ideas, not opinions
Stay on point
The great thing about doing this is that teachers can use it to count the number of times each student spoke, which makes grading easier.
The outer circle can be assigned a partner and given a list of pros and cons to look for which they check mark as they are performed.
Students can be given a few higher level questions to reflect upon.
Great Classroom Discussions
Example Socratic Seminar
I need 1-2 volunteers from each department.
While you listen, think about how you can use this in your content area.
I'm going to be asking for examples.
Evidence of Socratic Seminars
Please complete 1 Socratic Seminar per semester.
Turn in a lesson plan and any evidence to the Site Team. This may include: student debrief or reflection, peer evaluation, photos, etc.
If you need more training, we will have another session coming up soon!