“Do You Have Your Baseball Bat?” Dialogic Teaching in a Remote Environment

Mark Pearcy


Teachers have often relied on a dialogic style in their classrooms—utilizing dialogue and questioning techniques to develop student comprehension, probe for misunderstandings or misapprehensions, and provide “real-time” opportunities for the construction of knowledge and problem-solving. Effective teachers can use these techniques to scaffold dialogue in order to promote deeper understandings of complex problems. But the traditional functions of a dialogic classroom aren’t readily available or apparent in remote environments. For professors and students during the global COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, the vibrant nature of “in person” teaching gave way to remote environments and online-only interactions. How, then, can teachers still make use of the flexibility and energy of dialogic teaching, within the confines of a Zoom portal?

The purpose of this paper is to reflect on the curricular and instructional adaptations implemented by faculty at a small teaching college in the spring of 2020, which were aimed at maintaining the advantages of a dialogic style in the midst of enforced remote learning. These changes included both synchronous and asynchronous features in a variety of classes.  As teacher educators across the country are preparing for the possibility of extended or renewed quarantines in the future, the adaptations described here not only provide a roadmap for departments with similar needs, but also outline the often unexpected advantages to a remote environment. This is particularly relevant for those educators who have traditionally relied on a discursive, dialogic style, which places a premium on face-to-face interaction and an improvisatory element found in “live” teaching.



Remote learning; COVID-19 Teaching; Dialogic Teaching

Full Text:



  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c) 2020 Research Issues in Contemporary Education