Further more the approach forces teachers to assess the purpose and types of questioning they are asking. Closed knowledge based questions are far less effective in this scenario than deeper open questioning. If your purpose in asking a question is to elicit whether all members of the class (and not just the 2 or 3 who always answer) have aquired a particular piece of knowledge, then having them write the answer on mini white boards and hold them up, is a far more effective method.
As Dylan Wiliam has written in an article How to ask better Questions
It has been estimated that in an average career a teacher will ask over a million questions, the vast majority of which they know the answer to!
Far too many of these are lower order questions which simply require factual recall. These kind of questions may keep pupils awake but they do not help them to learn anything new.
Teachers need to ask fewer but better questions.
The introduction of 'No Hands Up' into classrooms not only involves all students but makes teachers analyse their own questioning techniques. An increase of wait time occurs as questions that require thinking become more prevalent. In addition more authentic questions tend to be asked where the teacher genuinly wants to know the answer rather than is seeking validation that someone in the class has listened to what they said.
Whilst introducing No Hands Up is not without difficulties or teething problems as both teachers and students (particularly students who are used to being the ones who answer all the questions) adapt, it is a vital component in developing a thinking classroom for all learners.
Those of you who have done it for years I would love to hear your comments and experiences and for those of you who haven't tried it yet I would encourage you to do so and I would love to hear about you experiences.