Talking Circles are simple and you only need a couple things in order for them to be successful
A talking piece - any item that can be passed or tossed. This can be something symbolic to the group, or something playful like a squishy ball.
A physical space that accommodates the entire group to sit side by side in a circle either in chairs or on the floor - For younger students, a rug to sit on is ideal, but chairs can also be placed around a group of tables if this makes the process easier. See our post: Talking Circles - Options for Physical Space.
A facilitator who leads the discussion and ensures that expectations are being followed - the facilitator in the classroom is generally the teacher, although students can take turn facilitating as well. See our post: Talking Circles - A Description of Expectations.
Adequate time for a talking circle to take place - generally the more often a talking circle takes place, the less time is needed. See our post: Talking Circles - Types of Talking Circles.
A prompt - this can be any topic of discussion and should be age-specific. The most common prompt when doing talking circles in classrooms is a simple check-in. See our post: Talking Circles - Prompt Ideas.
*** 3 Tips on how to run a successful talking circle:
1. Be sure that the group is clear about, and has agreed on,
expectations before the talking circle starts
2. As a group, decide how to ensure that the expectations will be respected (including what the consequences are if they are not respected).
3. Be sure that the expectations are followed;
this is the responsibility of the facilitator.
If expectations are followed,
the success of the taking circle will happen naturally.