Creating a Dialogue Journal
In a dialogue journal, you and a partner engage in a written conversation. This type of writing can help you think deeply about a topic, consider someone else's ideas, and get to know your partner better. You might work through a problem, reflect on something you know or learned, or discuss a serious or complex topic. Here's a sample dialogue journal between two students.
Anthony: The presidential election is happening soon, and I'm not sure how to feel about it. I'm not 18 so I can't vote. I want to get involved, but I don't feel like I have much of a say in the matter. How do you feel about the election? Do you have any ideas about how kids our age might get involved?
Chahna: My mom and dad talk about it a lot. They say it can be tricky to decide which candidate to trust, because so much of what they say is only a little bit true or a straight up lie. That's crazy, right? I want my president to be honest. If I can't trust a person to tell the truth, I don't want them to lead the country. That makes me think about your second question. Is there something we could do to let people know how truthful a candidate is being?
Anthony: Maybe we could start a class blog that tracks important things each candidate says. Then we could research to see how truthful the statement is. That way we could inform people about it.
Chahna: Great idea! We could use a star system to rate truthfulness. Five stars means the statement is true. Zero stars means it's a lie. Two or three stars means only half true. We should present this idea to Ms. Langdon.
Your Turn Start a dialogue journal with a classmate, friend, teacher, or relative. Choose one person to write the first entry. Then have the partner read and respond. Carry on the conversation until you reach a good stopping point. To help you get started, consider one of these prompts:
- Something I've always wondered about is . . .
- I have a real problem with . . .
- Something I wish I could change is . . .
- Something that really interests me right now is . . .
- Have you noticed that . . .
- I wish I knew more about . . .
Creating a Dialogue Journal by Thoughtful Learning is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at k12.thoughtfullearning.com/minilesson/creating-dialogue-journal.