Educators have long worked to develop a more equitable curriculum that will serve all learners. Many times, however, we don’t consider allowing them time to process and respond to that information.

“The typical teacher pauses, on the average, between 0.7 and 1.4 seconds after his/her questions before continuing to talk or permitting a student to respond. When teachers perceive a student as being slow or unable to answer, this period of time is frequently less than .7 seconds.” (Stahl, 1994)*

After asking a question, consider allowing the students to reflect for a few seconds before jumping in or asking a follow-up question.  Allow students 5 to 15 seconds to formulate an answer to a question. Not all learners process their thoughts at the same speed. 

* Stahl, R. J. (1994, May). Using “Think-Time” and “Wait-Time” Skillfully in the Classroom. Retrieved June 27, 2022, from 

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