Questioning is a vital part of thinking, teaching and learning. We need to consider the purpose of every activity our students engage in while always looking to build higher level questioning into the daily routine.
Generative: Exploring the topic
• Authentic questions or wonders that teacher doesn’t know the answer to.
• Essential questions that initiate exploration of a topic
Constructive: Building New Understanding
• Extending & Interpreting
• Connecting & Linking
• Orienting and focusing on big ideas, central concepts, or purpose
Facilitative: Promotes the learner’s own thinking & understanding
There is a widespread belief among teachers that digital technology is hampering students’ attention spans and ability to persevere, according to two surveys.
The problem may be that the traditional way of teaching is not bringing forth learning . It fails to engage in ways that maximizes the strengths of students today . Indeed, getting answers is easy and instantaneous. Ride that pony in the direction it faces and be the kind of teacher who doesn't need to tap dance! Facilitate learning in ways that allows kids to DO SOMETHING with the answers they get so easily via technology and the internet!
1. Skills are not sufficient; we must also have the disposition to use them. Possessing thinking skills and abilities alone is insufficient for good thinking. One must also have the disposition to use those abilities. This means schools must develop students’ inclination to think and awareness of occasions for thinking as well as their thinking skills and abilities. Having a disposition toward thinking enhances the likelihood that one can effectively use one’s abilities in new situations. 2. The development of thinking and understanding is fundamentally a social endeavor, taking place in a cultural context and occurring within the constant interplay between the group and the individual. Social situations that provide experience in communicating oneʼs own thinking as well as opportunities to understand othersʼ thinking enhance individual thinking. 3. The culture of the classroom teaches. It not only sets a tone for learning, but also determines what gets learned. The messages sent through the culture of the classroom communicate to students what it means to think and learn well. These messages are a curriculum in themselves, teaching students how to learn and ways of thinking. 4. As educators, we must strive to make students thinking visible. It is only by making thinking visible that we can begin to understand both what and how our students are learning. Under normal conditions, a studentʼs thinking is invisible to other students, the teacher, and even to him/herself, because people often think with little awareness of how they think. By using structures, routines, probing questions, and documentation we can make studentsʼ thinking more visible toward fostering better thinking and learning. 5. Good thinking utilizes a variety of resources and is facilitated by the use of external tools to “download” or “distribute” oneʼs thinking. Papers, logs, computers, conversation, and various means of recording and keeping track of ideas and thoughts free the mind up to engage in new and deeper thinking. 6. For classrooms to be cultures of thinking for students, schools must be cultures of thinking for teachers. The development of a professional community in which deep and rich discussions of teaching, learning, and thinking are a fundamental part of teachersʼ ongoing experience provides the foundation for nurturing studentsʼ thinking and learning.
Founded in 1943, ASCD (formerly the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development) is an educational leadership organization dedicated to advancing best practices and policies for the success of each learner.
"In the context of a gathering on November 10, 2012*, nine leading voices on education and child development — Carol Dweck, Richard Gerver, Nikhil Goyal, Ken Kay, Alfie Kohn, Steven Jones, Wendy Mogel, Ken Robinson, and Yong Zhao — engaged more than 600 educators and parents from 125 private and public schools in reflection on our deepest commitments to the lives and the learning of school-aged children at school and at home. What follows is a statement of common principles — shaped by participants’ input and these leaders’ collaborative reflection and design — that may help schools and families to determine how best to support our highest aspirations for the welfare of the children in our care."
A website by Carol Dweck, fully discussing Mindest:
"In a fixed mindset, people believe their basic qualities, like their intelligence or talent, are simply fixed traits. They spend their time documenting their intelligence or talent instead of developing them. They also believe that talent alone creates success—without effort. They’re wrong.
In a growth mindset, people believe that their most basic abilities can be developed through dedication and hard work—brains and talent are just the starting point. This view creates a love of learning and a resilience that is essential for great accomplishment. Virtually all great people have had these qualities."
This site reviews what Mindset is, how it affects success, why people differ and what the implications are for individuals. Many links to the left lead to wonderful, related resources and articles.
Learn how to differentiate instruction by making learning visible through structured student choice within the established curriculum. By making the learning choices visible, teachers can provide both supports for learners who are struggling as well as extensions for early finishers in one efficient and effective assignment. We will explore many examples from K-12 classrooms that have been used with students in the New York City Public Schools. Participants will also learn how an understanding of Multiple Intelligences helps teachers provide entry points for students into learning and will have time to begin the creation of structured student choice for their own classroom use.
The magic is not only in allowing access for all, but in student choice. Wow!
Rhonda Bondie, Ph.D., Fordham University firstname.lastname@example.org
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