Giving Students Voice Through Socratic Seminars

Giving Students Voice Through Socratic Seminars
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Having undistracted conversations about important ideas is where some of the most meaningful learning happens. It was the preferred method of education, all the way back to the ancient Greeks. Unfortunately, most education today is focused on student acquiring knowledge rather than exploring ideas. I chat with an educator today who is taking a different approach and and utilizing socratic seminars to give each student a voice and provide opportunities for them to explore important ideas.


Join me as I sit in on Chalimar Chieza’s 9th grade World Geography class as they dive into a socratic seminar. Hear students form hypotheses around the question“why do people around the world have different skin tones?” as well as my discussion with Chalimar on how she structures the socratic seminar so all students have a voice.

We discuss the following:

  • her role as facilitator
  • how the socratic method shapes the socratic seminar
  • the roles of the ‘inner circle’ and ‘outter circle’ during the seminar
  • data she collects during every seminar
  • how she assesses the students
  • the most challenging aspects of setting up a successful seminar
  • how she debriefs the seminar with the students
  • how she ensures that all students have a voice



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By Thom H Gibson

I help middle school STEM teachers create meaningful & memorable experiences for their students. Teacher, podcaster, YouTuber. Two-time teacher of the year

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