Monday, February 27, 2017

What thinking is worth making visible?

Last weekend I spent the whole of our Plugged-In PD in the Visible Thinking sessions facilitated by Mark Church.  This is the 4th post about our learning.

On Day 1 of the conference we spent the sessions talking about building a culture of thinking and sending a message to students that thinking matters.  On Day 2 our sessions focused on thinking.   Learning is a product or consequence of thinking, and yet as teachers we put a huge amount of effort into planning all the things we are going to do with our students - the learning engagements - but much less time planning for thinking.  Mark pointed out that thinking needs to be planned for and added into the planners and engagements.  Yet this is hard to do because thinking is invisible, and it's hard to plan things with the invisible - hence the need to make thinking visible, and notice and name the thinking we want done.  Because it's so hard to notice and name the thinking we want students to engage in, it's hard for us as teachers to activate it and to influence it - and this is where the Understanding Map comes in.

The Understanding Map contains the thinking moves that may be useful for developing understanding:
Mark pointed out that these routines do not form a taxonomy.  When you look at your subject, at what you want students to understand, you can make a decision about which of these routines will best help students develop a deep understanding.  It's also good to explain to students why you have made these choices - you should use the terms of the routines (for example " I want you to reason with evidence") instead of the simple word "think".  Make sure that you don't simply use the thinking routines as "activities".

Here is a video about the Project Zero Thinking Routines:

No comments:

Post a Comment