I had the opportunity to listen to a keynote by Stephen Sroka last week. At one point, Dr. Sroka took out a little bottle of bubbles, took a deep breath, and blew bubbles into the audience. He took three breaths and blew bubble three times to simulate relaxation breathing. I sat there thinking that I wanted to use this technique in my classroom. I know that physical activity helps to reduce stress and anxiety as well as stimulate the mind. Purposeful breathing paired with reflection helps open the mind to deep thinking. I wondered if there was a way to incorporate movement, breathing, and discussing, so I began brainstorming ideas to combine all three. This led to an activity I call Bubble Discussions.
This activity involves all three with the idea that in order for students to participate in deep-thinking conversations, they need to feel respected, calm, and stimulated to engage effectively.
Step 1: Students read a meaningful text. The topic of this short text (no more than two pages) is high-interest with multiple interpretations possible.
Step 2: The teacher chooses quotes from the text to display around the room. In addition to these quotes, the teacher may choose to include visuals (pertaining to topic) and quotes from other power texts. Between 8-12 pieces of paper are hung around the room....