Under the SIOP component, Interaction, is this feature on wait time. Wait time is the amount of time a teacher waits after asking a question. Using wait time has many benefits including increased quality and quantity of student responses. Teachers can use a variety of strategies to give students the wait time they need to succeed.
The 18th feature of SIOP, using wait time, is one of four features found within the component, Interaction. Wait time, sometimes called think time, is an important instructional component. Using wait time effectively has many benefits. There are many different places a teacher can experiment with wait time to help improve learning in the classroom.
Unfortunately, as teachers, we often reward "the quick one out of the gate." The average teacher waits less than one second between the time she or he asks a question and the time s/he answers the question for the class. This means that if you are a quick learner, you get a chance to shine. If you are not the quickest one in class, you may find that it difficult to contribute in class. A teacher who gives students 3-5 seconds of wait time upon asking a question will notice the following benefits:
There are a number of different places we can use wait time. Here are three of the most powerful:
There are quite a few ways that we can improve our ability to use wait time effectively. Like anything, using wait time (or think time) effectively requires conscious practice. Nonetheless, here are four tips to make sure you're getting the most out of this technique:
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