Effective ways to teach

Essay by gemasy April 2003

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"The Role Playing Process:

Make sure the students define a situation that is relevant and important to them--for example, a situation in which they may be offered a drug. Get details such as the setting and number and types of people involved.

Set the stage by arranging furniture, indicating where 'doors' might be located.

Prepare the audience by giving them specific questions to be prepared to answer at the conclusion of the role play. Examples:

(a) Would this work in real life?

(b) How would you have handled the situation?

There are numerous ways to select participants. Discuss ideas.

Begin the role play, stopping it if it is unrealistic, going nowhere, or has accomplished its purpose.

Ask questions of the participants and audience.

Reenact the role play, if necessary, using a variation of the situation, new participants, feedback provided to improve a skill. . .

Suggested situations: refusing a drug offer, encouraging a friend to stop smoking, talking to a teacher about an assignment, requesting help from a parent, stopping a drunk friend from driving."

"Socratic Instruction:

Note that one of the most effective strategies for teaching about alcohol and other drugs is Socratic instruction (questioning). Socratic questioning fosters critical thinking, evaluation, and knowledge application in students and should be used as frequently as possible in assignments and class discussions.

Allow 'wait time' for thinking. Give students time to consider the question and their response before requesting them to answer.

Avoid yes-no questions. They lead nowhere and do not promote thinking nor discussion.

Be sure students have the needed background and resources to respond to the questions posed. It is unfair and detrimental to their progress to not accept their levels of knowledge and experience.

Open-ended and closed questions are useful. Open-ended questions promote critical thinking, while closed questions can...