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Dialogic teaching: The power of classroom talk to increase student engagement

Written by: Graham Chisnell
5 min read
GRAHAM CHISNELL FCCT, EDUCATION CONSULTANT AND AUTHOR, UK Classroom talk that engages students in dialogue to stimulate and extend thinking, knowing and understanding can have a powerful and positive impact on student learning (Alexander, 2020). In this reflective piece, I examine how embedding a culture of dialogic teaching in school impacts on teacher engagement and student learning. The challenge As a CEO of a multi-academy trust, I was asked to sponsor a primary school that faced a range of challenges. The school had been placed in special measures by Ofsted and had also seen an influx of disadvantaged families, including many refugee students new to the country that were housed in local hotels. Teachers were dedicated and compassionate in support of their students; nonetheless, student engagement in class remained low. School leaders were keen to use research-informed practice to best support the students. Research by the Education Endowment Foundation asserts that dialogic

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