A to Z of Teaching

mantle of the expert

A teaching technique in which students are asked to pretend to be experts in a specific topic, and are given a related task to complete.

The students are asked to remain aware that they are taking part in a fiction and are not becoming actual experts, but to play the role to their best ability through researching the task. They are usually given specific inquiry questions to start their research.

The educator plans the context and the commission, developing these with the students. They can encourage or provide different points of view among the students and can include some point of tension as the task develops.

The approach was developed by Dorothy Heathcote in the 1970s and 1980s. Inspired by drama teaching in schools, she provided numerous props and resources, but later implementations do not rely on these.

What's your top 'mantle of the expert' resource?

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