Narratives in the classroom: A tale of affordances and missed opportunities

Hadar Netz, Aliza Segal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Oral narratives are typically examined through the lens of identity performance. In contrast, in the current study narratives are investigated from a pedagogic angle, focusing on their role in meaning-making processes in the classroom and shedding light on pedagogic affordances and missed opportunities surrounding the narratives. Data are drawn from two different settings: classes of students identified as gifted (grades 5–8, US) and mainstream classes (grades 5–6, Israel). Quantitative analysis reveals different frequencies in the two corpora: x¯=8.06 narratives per hour in the US classes, and x¯=1.4 narratives per hour in the Israeli classes. Microanalysis reveals differences between spontaneously emerging vs. strategically elicited narratives. Whereas the former typically engender a cluster of narratives that are integrated into academic talk, the latter tend to remain within the confines of Initiation-Response-Feedback, as students attempt to align their voices with the authoritative voices of teacher or curriculum, and thus their pedagogic potential remains unrealized.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100937
JournalLinguistics and Education
StatePublished - 1 Aug 2021


  • Classroom discourse
  • Discourse genres
  • Meaning-making
  • Oral narratives
  • Stories
  • Teacher uptake

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Education
  • Linguistics and Language


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