Dialogic teaching

The benefits and indicators of dialogic teaching

Dialogic teaching means finding out what students think, engaging with their developing ideas and helping them to talk through misunderstandings.

Dialogic teaching is about:

  • Eliciting, explaining and comparing and contrasting ideas (“not all ideas are born equal!”).
  • Achieving a balance between instructional, ‘authoritative’ teacher talk and more open discussion with students.
  • Modelling and demonstrating useful ways of using language.
  • Encouraging students to take extended turns in classroom discussions and not evaluating their responses immediately.
  • Using students’ ideas and perspectives in teaching, by building on and challenging them.
  • Making the most effective use of group work for exploration of ideas in a safe context.
  • Using whole class discussion to reveal what students think and to stimulate their reasoning.
  • Engaging all students actively in learning activities.