“How can I make the classroom more engaging for the students?”
“How can I ensure students learn better in class?”
“How can I get the best out of my students?”
These are some questions that the teachers often find themselves asking.
When we talk about classroom learning, teachers can choose from various teaching strategies available.
The idea is that students work well when they work together. Collaborative learning activities enable high levels of engagement and motivation in students.
One such approach involving student collaboration is the Respond, Reflect, and Review Strategy. It is an open classroom engagement approach where students evaluate each other's work.
This article will take a deep dive into the Respond, Reflect, and Review Strategy.
How Does Respond, Reflect, and Review Strategy Work?
There are three steps involved in this strategy.
Step 1: Respond
The first step in the strategy involves the students responding to questions or scenarios.
Before the exercise begins, the teacher can make groups of students or, if their numbers are low, individually.
You present a scenario or throw some questions to the students (or groups of students) and ask them to respond within a specified time.
However, ensure that you carefully and clearly define the task to the students. Your questions to the students must be specific. They must know what exactly they need to answer. They can record their responses on a sheet of paper.
For instance, if the students presented something, you can ask questions such as:
- “What strategies did you use to get to your results?”
- “What were the challenges you faced while coming to the results?”
- “What are the applications for your results?”
Similarly, you can ask other questions and also include parameters like word limit for student responses, research sources, etc.
After the students fill in their responses, they must pass their sheets to their peers for reflection.
- Step 2: Reflect
The second step involves students reflecting on their peers' responses. This is where the students critique and give feedback to their peers.
But before the students evaluate the answers, the teacher must set and enforce guidelines regarding the process.
For starters, the feedback should be as concise as possible. So, instead of being general, you can try using examples to clarify how the student can improve. Also, the input needs to be cheerful and kind.
The goal of this strategy is not to put the students down. It is to help them become better learners. So, giving positive feedback ensures that students can take steps to improve upon the suggestions.
The students need to learn to listen to understand, not to react.
If there are groups of students involved, make sure that everyone contributes to evaluating the original group's responses.
After that, the sheet goes back to the student (or the group) for the final step of the process.
- Step 3: Review
This is the final step of the Respond, Reflect, and Review strategy. It involves the students looking at the feedback to their responses.
After reading the same, the students need to share their feedback with the whole class.
The teacher can again set some ground rules for the same. For instance, the teacher can ensure that everyone listens to the speaker intentionally. Moreover, the teacher needs to ensure that everyone appreciates the speaker for their efforts. Similarly, the teacher needs to ensure that the speaker student is grateful to their peers for evaluating their work.
After the student wraps up sharing their review, they can note down their feedback and improve.
You can use this teaching strategy regularly to get the best output from the students.
For instance, if the students are working on a project for the semester, they can use this strategy regularly. You can decide the number of sessions dedicated to this activity.
So, if the teacher decides to use this strategy for five sessions, the students will need to present their updated responses every time.
After every evaluation, the student can update their responses. Eventually, they'll refine their results to get the best outcomes.
You can think of this strategy as a dress rehearsal till you get to the preferred results.
Advantages of Respond, Reflect, and Review Strategy
- Every voice gets heard in the classroom as the student participates actively in the exercise.
- Students get to look at different points of view. It allows them to experience one another's unique perspectives and ideas, which are necessary to grow and develop as thinkers.
- Students get to learn how to respond to criticism.
- Students learn the skills of giving and receiving constructive feedback. Moreover, when the students get feedback from their peers, they think about it more. It helps them refine their understanding of the subject better.
There are some things to keep in mind while conducting this strategy in the classroom. These include:
- The teacher needs to share the evaluation parameters before the activity starts and set some ground rules before engaging in the activity. For example, the students can be made to follow the template for evaluation.
- You need to ensure that students constructively evaluate their peer assessments. If not taken care of, this process may result in many student conflicts.
- Every student must be respectful of others' opinions at all times.
The Respond, Reflect, and Review Strategy is considered one of the most effective teaching strategies.
In this three-step approach, the students constructively evaluate their peers' responses. The strategy promotes a culture of positive and collaborative classroom learning.
The teacher has a significant role in guiding the students to work together in a positive environment. Therefore, you need to ensure that every student participates.
Students are encouraged to express their opinions, listen to one another, and take different perspectives to understand the subject better. This strategy works when students feel safe but challenged by their peers.