Learning to Learn: Active Listening

As I begin to think about my focus for next fall, I realize that I want to start the year with many lessons related to what it takes to be an effective learner.  Hence, I'll probably blog about that all summer as I explore the essential components of learning. Teaching children how to learn is a primary responsibility in this age of abounding information.

One essential ingredient to learning is active listening.  What does this look like in the classroom?  How do you promote it?  When is it essential?  As we flip classrooms, whole class listening lessons will decrease, but the importance of those whole class shares will increase.  Thus the critical need to teach children how to actively listen.

Next week at the Wayland Literacy Institute, I will present a tech-ed workshop.  At the start of the workshop I'll introduce teachers to the tweet sheet and Twitter back channeling.  I'll also engage teachers in a short discussion related to active listening.  I look forward to their comments and thoughts as I know that my workshop attendees represent dedicated educators from many school systems and positions.

If you teach active listening to your students, let me know what you think is important?  How do you teach active listening, and encourage its use throughout the year?  What are the essential components of active listening?  I welcome your feedback, and I'll let you know what the workshop participants have to add next week in the comment section below.
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