Education through Study Centers

The Importance of Classroom Discussion

School environments are social environments and the standard model of teaching and learning is an interactive model, so social skills are vital for students to successfully integrate into the setting.

Behavior is systemic and skill-based, and many of the specific behavior expectations that schools and teachers have are unique to their system. Students do not have these expectations imposed upon them in other settings, e.g. the home or peer group, and so do not use some of the skills required by the school other than in the school setting. Schools and teachers need to teach students the necessary skills and then revisit and reteach the skills, especially after periods when the student has been away from the school, e.g. on holidays or in a different school system.

Establishing a positive classroom environment where students are respectful of themselves and others will help reduce the risk of conflict. There are a number of professional development resources available through Student Services Division that can assist teachers to develop their skills in this area.


  •             Humans process events verbally
  •             Speech makes thinking “visible,” concrete
  •             Discussion is a way of testing and exploring new ideas
  •              Students acquire knowledge and insight from diverse points of view
  •              Conversation provides practice with problems and concepts
  •              Students’ awareness of, and tolerance for, ambiguity or complexity increases
  •             Students recognize and investigate their assumptions
  •             Attentive, respectful listening is encouraged
  •             Intellectual agility is increased
  •             Students become connected to a topic
  •             It shows respect for students’ voices and experiences
  •             Students are affirmed as co-creators of knowledge
  •             It develops the capacity for the clear communication of ideas and meaning
  •             It develops habits of collaborative learning
  •             Students develop skills of synthesis and integration

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