Anchor Charts

for Accountable Talk

Support student conversations with language stem anchor charts:

In the Accountable Talk class discussion model, the students are able to discuss a topic around what they are reading and studying; that may be selected by the teacher, but the students are carrying on the discussion with minimal interference from the teacher. She or he is merely acting as a facilitator and not really leading the discussion. Students, of course, need to be trained to listen to each other and untrained regarding raising their hands when they wish to speak. You will use the "Turn and Talk" model every day when you do your read aloud, whereas you can reserve the whole class discussions for a couple of times per week. The "Turn and Talk" is done during reading; the numbers of stops depend on the grade level of the students, with younger grades stopping fewer times. The whole class discussions happen after the reading is complete. The whole class discussion would be around a "big idea" or theory within the book or chapter. Perhaps on such a day, instead of turning and talking, students would use post-its to "stop and jot" down something interesting regarding the question.

The whole class discussions will be much harder to pull off than the "turn and talk" with a partner. You might want to start slowly, perhaps going from partners to small groups, two or three sets of partners having a discussion, and then finally to the whole class. Once the process is incorporated, you will be really pleased. Just as in the workshop model, with Accountable Talk your students are gradually taking responsibility for their own learning.