The Think-Pair-Share is a cooperative discussion activity that allows students to think about the topic or reading, share their thoughts with a partner, and them report out to a larger group. What I like about this strategy is that it gives quieter students a chance to process their thoughts before engaging in a discussion. Also, this strategy helps students to work on their listening and cooperative learning skills.

I've used this strategy with a variety of age levels and with a variety of types of texts. Often, when this strategy is described online, the directions state that you should have students engage in the "think" section for only a few moments. I completely disagree with this model. I feel like this strategy can be used in such a variety of ways that any one step should not be too limiting in its structure.

There are two variations on this basic strategy. One is the Write-Pair-Share, where students have time to write their thoughts before sharing them with a partner. The other is the Formulate-Listen-Share-Create, where students first formulate their own answer to a question, then they meet in their pairs to listen and share their answers to the question, after which they then create a new answer that includes the best parts of the two answers. I love this strategy for questions where there is not necessarily a "right" answer to a question. This strategy allows for a more collaborative approach to answering open-ended questions.

This strategy can be adapted for use at any grade level. For example, the "Predicting Pumpkins" lesson is structured in a way that could be made accessible to students at any age. Another site offers examples for all levels of mathematics classes, including algebra and calculus.

I've used the Think-Pair-Share as a pre-reading strategy with The Crucible by Arthur Miller and to lead into William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night. Recently, I also incorporated this as a during-reading into my unit on Laurie Halse Anderson's Speak. This was the first time I had used the Think-Pair-Share with poetry.

The result of a Think-Pair-Share during-reading activity used with freshmen students to analyze Laurie Halse Anderson's poem "Listen".
The result of a Think-Pair-Share during-reading activity used with freshmen students to analyze Laurie Halse Anderson's poem "Listen".