Classroom Discourse Analysis: A Tool for Critical Reflection by Betsy Rymes

By Betsy Rymes

This publication presents lecturers with the instruments to investigate speak of their personal lecture room. With extrodinary ease, the writer makes complicated theoretical and methodological instruments obtainable to academics. the writer presents an inviting approach in to the wondrous global of language in use that would remind lecturers who're dealing with exceptional outdoor pressures why they turned lecturers within the first position

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Student: I thought it was creepy, actually. Apology/Acceptance Student: I’m sorry I’m late. Teacher: That’s okay—we started late today anyway. Summons/Acknowledgement Teacher: John? John: Rymes Yes? Doing Classroom Discourse Analysis 56 When students’ responses counter our expectations, we need to think on our feet—it is not always easy to change the momentum of expectations set up by the first part of an adjacency pair (Do you know what I mean? Are you there? Hello? ). Unpredictable Interactional Context: Foiled Expectations Many teachers design and re-design lessons precisely because their expectations for the second part of an adjacency pair sequence have been foiled.

Recently, I saw some vivid evidence of gender differences in education as I was paging through the Georgia Public Broadcasting program guide. My eye caught a picture of eleven young writers, winners in this year’s Reading Rainbow Young Writers and Illustrators Contest. The eleven youngsters ranged in age from Kindergarten through third grade, and seemed to be a racially diverse group. However, Rymes Doing Classroom Discourse Analysis 46 ten of the eleven winners pictured were girls. Why? There are many possible explanations.

In this case, the teacher sequentially deletes (Ford, 1990) Danny’s response. That is, by re-asking her question about hats after Danny has already provided a lengthy answer, she constructs his response as non-existent. This tendency to ignore what seem to be digressions can have unfortunate consequences in classroom discourse. In the case of the “hats” discussion, it led to Danny’s silence for the rest of the session. Admittedly, it takes careful interactional negotiation to sequentially construct unexpected or confusing student responses as contributions that are potentially leading somewhere important.

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