Students’ Gestured Candidate Responses

A students uses a gestured candidate response to answer a teacher's question

From the back of a computer science classroom, student Sofia uses a gestured candidate response to answer a teacher’s question without speaking.

Gestured Candidate Responses (GCR):

To answer teachers’ questions during whole-class discussions, students sometimes use representational gestures to provide silent, ‘off-the-record,’ tentative responses. These gestured candidate responses demonstrate their understanding to the teacher, and what they could potentially share with the class if called on.

Teachers are responsive to GCRs in three ways:

  • nominating a student to share the contribution
  • taking up and broadcasting a student’s contribution
  • declining the GCR by not publicly pursuing the contribution

Flood, V. J., & Harrer, B. W. (2022). Teachers’ responsiveness to students’ gestured candidate responses in whole-class STEM interactions. Classroom Discourse, 1-21.