Giving Feedback: Say No to No
Lesson Objective: Learn how to improve your questioning to guide student responses
All Grades / All Subjects / Questioning

Thought starters

  1. How does Ms. Bannon validate student responses before pushing them in the direction they need to go?
  2. Why does Ms. Bannon focus on improving her questioning rather than simply telling students that an answer is not correct?
  3. How does her approach build confidence?
9 Comments
I USE THIS SAME METHOD IN MY CLASSES. I HAVE ADULT STUDENTS WITH LOW SELF ESTEEM AND THEY NEED THIS POSITIVE REINFORCEMENT AS MUCH AS YOUNGER STUDENTS. I RARELY USE THE WORD "NO". I ACKNOWLEDGE THEIR EFFORT AND TRY TO REDIRECT THEM TOWARDS THE CORRECT LINE OF THINKING IN ORDER TO ARRIVE AT THE CORRECT ANSWER.
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I use a handy tool that follows this principle. It's a traditional red pen, but with an eraser on the end. As I'm checking students' work, which they've done in pencil, I put a check mark next to the correct answers. Instead of marking a red X on the incorrect answers, I erase the incorrect answers return the papers to the students. This gives the students positive feedback and allows them to self-correct.
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Yes, I agree always be positive, encouraging and try to build on success by giving success to build on.
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I also like to use students' misunderstandings or misconceptions as a teachable moment (knowing that many other students have the same misconceptions), asking for thumbs or sideways (never down, never "no"!) if students agree or are a bit more confused. That way the student can explain their thought process and you can figure out what they need to fix up. Again, like you said, it's never "wrong." Wrong gives the impression that it can never be right. Any mistake is what "needs to be fixed."
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I definitely agree with saying No to No. I will be more conscious of that in my classroom. :-)
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Transcripts

  • 04:18: KATIE BANNON: I think it’s important to help a child understand something if they’re not getting it the first

    04:18: KATIE BANNON: I think it’s important to help a child understand something if they’re not getting it the first time by not just saying no to them, like, “That’s wrong.” We need to think of another way. I think you need to validate what they’re saying and show that what they’re saying is in some way meaningful and useful, what they’re doing, but then you have to push them a little bit further.
    04:38: KATIE BANNON [in class]: Okay, so you guys are telling me a whole lot of details, which is awesome because you’re really retelling what happened, but now I want us to stop and focus on just what is that main idea.
    04:50: KATIE BANNON: I stay away from yes or no questions, I stay away from one-word answers, I want questions that are gonna make them push their thinking. That’s something that takes practice is coming up with the questions that will get them on their own to think further about what they’ve already said, but I think that cutting it down right away and saying, “No, that’s not what we’re looking for,” you know, “You’re on the wrong track”, will just scare them and make them not want to try. I want kids to feel confident, and, even if it’s not the exact answer that we’re looking for that day, know that they can get themselves there.

School Details

Ps 110 Florence Nightingale
285 Delancey Street
New York NY 10002
Population: 424

Data Provided By:

greatschools

Teachers

Katie Bannon
English Language Arts Math / 3 / Teacher

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Tutorial

All Grades / All Subjects / Tch Tools

Lesson Idea

Grades 9-12, All Subjects, Class Culture

Lesson Idea

Grades 9-12, ELA, Class Culture

Teaching Practice

All Grades / All Students / Class Culture