I love using small group instruction, but teachers often ask me, "How can I make sure my students are on task?" One effective way that I've found to monitor small group Reciprocal Teaching is to ask my students to record their group conversations.
The first time they do this I will transcribe the conversation (or parts of it), and assess them using this rubric:
I do not listen and transcribre every single time, but I have them record themselves every time, and they never know when I will be asessing them. This adds another level of accountability, and although the first transcriptions were very impressive, I have seen them pushing themselves even harder to get to another level.
Finally, yes, it was extra work to transcribe, but I was so proud of my students. It was very fulfilling and motivating for me to see them thinking and working as a group!
Below, is a short excerpt from a longer group transcription, but I was so pleased to see these 9th graders communicating without teacher supervision, and really thinking about the piece of literature they had just finished reading: