Teaching and planning for a culture of thinking in the EFL/ESL classroom and school


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This is a new version (Dec 2013) on the Culture of Thinking, adding a component on making thinking visible (Project Zero, Harvard U.) and hints on how to implement a plan with your colleagues at your school or deparment.

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Teaching and planning for a culture of thinking in the EFL/ESL classroom and school

  1. 1. A Culture of Thinking HOW CAN EFL SUPPORT THINKING IN AND OUT OF THE CLASSROOM? DECEMBER 2013. Workshop facilitator: Mauricio Miraglia twitter @mauromiraglia
  2. 2. Look at each picture: what would you ask your students? Image 1* Image 2 Write questions individually to later share in our group Image 3
  3. 3. Questions Wh Questions  What  Where  When  Who  How  Why  What if… Image from http://www.visiblethinkingpz.org/
  4. 4. Sharing and organizing Gathering What Where When Who Processing How Why Applying What if… Image from http://www.visiblethinkingpz.org/
  5. 5. Evidence of your work
  6. 6. So what IS thinking?
  7. 7. How do thinking and learning connect? John Dewey Paulo Freire Critical Thinking.org We do not learn from experience...we learn from reflecting on experience. The educational process is never neutral. People can be passive recipients of knowledge — whatever the content — or they can engage in a ‘problemposing’ approach in which they become active participants. … The ability to think critically involves three things: ( 1 ) an attitude of being disposed to consider in a thoughtful way the problems and subjects that come within the range of one's experiences, (2) knowledge of the methods of logical inquiry and reasoning, and (3) skills in applying those methods. We only think when confronted with a problem. Reflection is a discipline. It is essential that people link knowledge to action so that they actively work to change their societies at a local level and beyond.
  8. 8. What is a Culture of Thinking? We define “Cultures of Thinking” (CoT) as places where a group’s collective as well as individual thinking is valued, visible, and actively promoted as part of the regular, day-to-day experience of all group members. (Ritchhart, 2013) More at http://www.visiblethinkingpz.org cultural forces present in every school, classroom, and group learning situation. These forces act as shapers of the group’s cultural dynamic and consist of: 1. Language 2. Time 3. Environment 4. Opportunities 5. Routines 6. Modeling 7. Interactions 8. Expectations Ritchhart, Project Zero Visual Thinking: This work doesn’t happen by teachers merely implementing a defined set of practices; it must be supported by a rich professional culture
  9. 9. Do you agree/disagree? To what extent? Why?  We can teach thinking in our EFL classroom  Children and teenagers can learn how to think  Teaching practices can promote (better) thinking Consider in your answer: 1.Language 2.Time 3.Environment 4.Opportunities 5.Routines 6.Modeling 7.Interactions 8.Expectations
  10. 10. Lucrecia Prat-Gay’s classroom example EFL & Thinking in action Image re-designed by M. Miraglia based on Lucrecia’s presentation at Chile’s Oxford Day, 2009
  11. 11. Fostering thinking: hands-on activity 1 1. Learning goal 2. Age group 3. Level of English 4. Language Teaching point 5. Thinking skills involved
  12. 12. Revised Bloom’s taxonomy
  13. 13. Questions based on Bloom’s taxonomy REMEMBERING  remembering  memorizing  recognizing  recalling identification  recalling information who, what, when, where, how ...? Recognizing Listing Describing Identifying Naming Locating Finding
  14. 14. Questions based on Bloom’s taxonomy UNDERSTANDING  interpreting  translating from one medium to another  describing in one's own words  organization and selection of facts and ideas Summarizing Interpreting Inferring Classifying Comparing Explemplifying how is ... an example of ...? how is ... related to ...? why is ... significant?
  15. 15. Questions based on Bloom’s taxonomy APPLYING  problem solving  applying information to produce some result  use of facts, rules and principles Implementing Carrying out Using Executing
  16. 16. Questions based on Bloom’s taxonomy ANALYZING  subdividing something to show how it is put together  finding the underlying structure of a communication  identifying motives  separation of a whole into component parts Comparing Organizing Deconstructing Integrating what are the parts or features of ...? classify ... according to ... outline/diagram ... how does ... compare/contrast with ...? what evidence can you list for ...?
  17. 17. Questions based on Bloom’s taxonomy EVALUATING  making value decisions about issues  resolving controversies or differences of opinion  development of opinions, judgments or decisions do you agree that ...? what do you think about ...? what is the most important ...? place the following in order of priority ... how would you decide about ...? what criteria would you use to assess ...?
  18. 18. Questions based on Bloom’s taxonomy CREATING  creating a unique, original product that may be in verbal form or may be a physical object  combination of ideas to form a new whole what ideas can you add to ...? how would you create/design a new ...? what might happen if you combined ...? what solutions would you suggest for ...?
  19. 19. Fostering thinking: hands-on activity 2 1. Learning goal 2. Age group 3. Level of English 4. Language Teaching point 5. Thinking skills involved
  20. 20. The tasks ahead? • Make sure your learning objectives include thinking skills (change starts with ourselves and our classroom); • Model thinking in your lessons; • Make thinking visual; • Engage students into thinking at all instances, evaluation is not an exception; • Talk to your colleagues and stakeholders about the importance of installing a culture of thinking at your school; • Design a model with colleagues for your lesson plans; • Get the message out to students and parents; • Design a poster to communicate thinking skills in a friendly manner; • Think about your thinking model and start again! 
  21. 21. Sources  Tishman, S, N., D, & S., E. (1995). The Thinking Classroom: learning and teaching in a culture of thinking. Needham Heights, MA: Allyn & Bacon.  Ritchhart, R. (n.d.). Visible thinking, cultures of thinking. Project Zero, Harvard University. Retrieved from http://www.pz.gse.harvard.edu/cultures_of_thinking.php Workshop facilitator: Mauricio Miraglia twitter @mauromiraglia