Peer-to-peer sharing is a commonly used practice in elementary classrooms. Many teachers utilize “think-pair-share” or “turn and talk” during core classes. But what if encouraging student-to-student conversations in a relaxed way could improve student learning overall? That’s exactly what 30 Second conversations aim to do. These morning meeting conversations can be a game-changer in your classroom. Read on to find out how 30-second conversations work in the elementary classroom.
What is a 30-second conversation in elementary school?
A 30-second conversation is as simple as it sounds. Students are paired together and engage in conversation for 30 seconds. When used as part of a morning meeting routine, teachers can provide students with a conversation prompt to guide the discussion.
Try to choose an open-ended conversation prompt, and not a prompt that requires a simple yes/no or choice answer. The ideas for conversation prompts can be as simple as “What did you do last night?” Here are some other ideas to start conversation between peers:
With guidance and practice, students become more familiar with conversation skills like asking questions, responding to questions, and engaging in active listening. Looking for more conversation starters? Check out our morning meeting task card and writing prompt set. Use these versatile cards for 30-second conversations, morning meeting sharing, or journal writing prompts.
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Morning Meeting Discussion Slides
Benefits of 30 Second Conversations:
This practice benefits all learners but may be especially helpful to English Language Learners. Additionally, fostering positive peer-to-peer interaction can boost students’ receptiveness to new material and increase their comprehension.
Looking for more ways to start the conversation? Our list of Morning Message Ideas can help!
30 Second Conversations in the Classroom
Many Lucky Second Grade Teachers are already using peer-to-peer conversations in their classrooms. Says one teacher,
“In my class I call the discussions during morning meeting ’30-second conversations’. The idea was inspired by the LETRS training. I give them a topic and they turn and talk with another student practicing specific speaking & active listening skills. It allows all students to talk, gives my ELL students a chance to practice the language with their peers, and helps them build communication skills. After they take turns talking to each other a few are called on to share with the whole class.”
More Conversation Starter Ideas
Bonus Download – Growth Mindset Reading Passages
Love these ideas for 30-second conversation starters? Extend the activity with this free download of Growth Mindset Reading Passages. Each passage gives a social scenario that students can relate to. At the end of each scenario, the student is given a question or two that ties in with the lesson in the passage. Students will read, reflect, and respond to the story. Growth Mindset passages encourage students to do their best, believe in themselves, accept challenges and know that mistakes are an opportunity to learn.