Analyzing classroom discourse is important for understanding and implementing pedagogical practices that effectively engages students in deep learning. The evaluative discourse of teachers supports the interaction with students, thereby encouraging their active participation, achieving teaching objectives, and accomplishing a positive teacher-student relationship. This study aims to analyze the engagement resources in Turkish classrooms, an area that has been unexplored in the existing research on classroom discourse. The study uses the Appraisal Theory (Martin & White, 2005) which was developed within Systemic Functional Linguistics (Halliday, 1961, 1994). The Appraisal Theory covers three main aspects of language use: Engagement, Attitude, and Graduation. Within this framework, this study focuses on the evaluative language strategies used by educators teaching Turkish, aiming to examine how they employ certain linguistic resources in their classrooms. Additionally, it tries to explore the extent to which their evaluative discourse differs based on gender and teaching experience. The research includes eight participants, comprising four male and four female teachers who teach Turkish to 7th graders in different secondary schools. The results revealed that gender and teaching experience significantly influence the use of engagement resources in Turkish classrooms. Specifically, female teachers had a preference for heteroglossic resources, reflecting diverse linguistic styles and voices in their instruction, while male tecahers tended to rely more on monoglossic resources, emphasizing factual information and authoritative communication. Furthermore, experienced teachers employed a higher frequency of heteroglossic resources, contributing to a more engaging classroom environment. These findings emphasize the importance of evaluative discourse strategies and have implications for improving educational practices.
Appraisal Theory, Engagement System, Classroom discourse, Teacher talk