"Turn and Face" is a learning strategy that encourages students to use evidence from the text as talking points during partner discussions.
When using ThinkCERCA, the "Turn and Face" strategy works well to clarify how key details in a text correlate with an essential question and to the argument as a whole. With practice, students gain a better understanding of how evidence supports their arguments and, as a result, they will apply this strategy to their everyday speaking skills by intuitively forming arguments.
Time: Varies based on number of questions
Materials: Prepared questions, CERCA lesson
1. Model a "Turn and Face" activity with the students the day before your scheduled activity.
a) Create 5 questions (similar to the CERCA question) about an article for which students have already completed a full CERCA writing assignment. This should be an article that they are very familiar with.
b) Ask for two students volunteers to perform the demonstration. The students should stand with their backs to each other.
c) As the students one of the questions you created previously and give them 1 minute to think about their responses. *To ensure that the students will have opposing arguments, you may choose to assign one of the students in each partnership to argue “Yes” and the other to argue “No”
d) After time is up, the students should turn to face each other and share their Claims, Evidence and Reasons in 30 seconds each.
e) The students should turn back around for 30 seconds to think of why they disagree with the other person’s argument. Then, turn and share their reasons.
f) The students should then turn back around for another 15 seconds to think of a rebuttal. Afterwards, have students "Turn and Face" to share their rebuttals.
g) Repeat until you are through with all of the 5 examples. You may choose to have the students keep the same partners for each question, or you may choose to switch partners each time.
2. In preparation for a new CERCA writing assignment, create 10-15 questions for the students to conduct the Turn and Face activity. These questions should be higher order thinking questions that allow for argumentative responses (similar to the CERCA question). Make sure that the questions are spread across the text.
3. Have the students log in to their ThinkCERCA accounts and complete the first 4 steps of the assigned CERCA
Step 1: Connect
Step 2: Read (TWICE: once individually, then a second time as a whole group)
Step 3: Engage with Text
Step 4: Summarize
4. Follow the steps of the Turn and Face using the 10-15 questions created for the new CERCA
5. After the activity, students begin working on their full CERCA writing. Using the information acquired during the "Turn and Face", the students should have a strengthened understanding of the text and should be able to write a stronger argument as a result.
This activity can be used in groups, where one team goes against another (similar to a mini-debate).
Students can also create questions for their opponent to answer after the full round is over.