Rough Draft Talk

In a math classroom, students are constantly working on ideas. Jo Boaler shares in “Mathematical Mindsets” that students falsely believe math should be done correctly when in reality, the thinking part is most valuable (2015). To increase this behavior, the shift in teaching mathematics requires us to provide students space to make mistakes. Rough draft talk provides this space.

This simple strategy relies on the work of our ELA colleagues when teaching the writing process. Expecting students to share parts of ideas is important because it sparks the ideas of other students. Additionally, expecting imperfect, rough draft responses, increases engagement and student status. Students feel good about participating in class!

When students get stuck, provide the space to talk about their thinking with a partner. Give a prompt, sentence starter or leading question to motivate the conversation. Be sure to use the words “Rough Draft” so students know your expectation that their responses are not perfect. Share within groups or as a whole class.

Please share your experiences with using “Rough Draft Talk” in the space below.

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