Edited by: Jane C. Lo
Foreword by: Diana E. Hess
Publication Date: January 28, 2022
For the past 2 decades, the field of social studies education has seen an increase in research on the use of discussions as an essential instructional technique. This book examines the importance of using quality dialogue as a tool to help students understand complex issues in social studies. This edited volume provides a collection of well-known, evidence-based discussion techniques, as well as classroom examples showing the methods in use. While using discussion as an instructional method is widely considered a best practice of civic learning, actual high-quality discussions are rare and notoriously difficult to facilitate. Making Classroom Discussions Work is designed to guide teacher educators and classroom teachers in facilitating equitable and productive discussions that will boost learning and democratic engagement.
Jane C. Lo is an assistant professor of teacher education at Michigan State University.
“Theoretically, empirically, and practically, Making Classroom Discussions Work: Methods for Quality Dialogue in the Social Studies is a powerful and important book. I commend Professor Lo for bringing together such a rich collection of chapters written by some of our field’s best thinkers. If you care about the importance of high-quality discussions in social studies and also want to become a better discussion teacher, I strongly encourage you to read this book.”
—From the Foreword by Diana E. Hess, dean, Karen A. Falk Distinguished Chair in Education, University of Wisconsin–Madison School of Education
“High-quality discussions are a gift—deepening understanding both of the content at hand and of high-quality discussion itself. This book details strategies for promoting discussions that are equitable and effective. By blending practical and scholarly insights, the authors in this volume respond to an urgent need. Looking at our society, we can see every day the profound costs of neglecting this priority.”
—Joseph Kahne, Dutton Presidential Chair for Education Policy and Politics, University of California, Riverside
“Lo has assembled an amazing array of scholars who review foundational work on discussion, provide in-depth classroom examples and lessons illustrating specific discussion techniques, and then broach less-traveled terrain in discussion research and practice with an emphasis on the inclusion of all students. Even educators who closely follow discussion research and pedagogy will find fresh perspectives in this book. This book is a must-read for preservice and practicing teachers, teacher educators, and researchers.”
—Patricia G. Avery, professor emeritus, University of Minnesota