Ask yourself: “What kind of a classroom environment do I want to create?
DYNAMICSRED ZONEYELLOW ZONEGREEN ZONE ROUTINES & PROCEDURES STRUCTURED/ MECHANICAL INDIVIDUAL LY DEFINED NEGOTIATED INSTRUCTIONPARROT LIKE & PROCEDURAL VARIEDCONSULTATIVE PARTICIPATORY METHODOLOGYTEACHER CENTRED LEARNER CENTRED LEARNING CENTRED STRATEGYCONTROLLEDGUIDEDLEADING SPACEPRE-DEFINEDLEARNER DEFINED LEARNING DEFINED TIMERESTRICTED/ INHIBITING LOOSELY STRUCTURED DEFINED BY ‘TIMING’ LANGUAGE/ COMMUNICATION AUTOCRATIC TONALITY DEMOCRATIC TONALITY HUMANISTIC TONALITY BEHAVIOUR MANAGEMENT CARROTS & STICKS (Coercive) DELEGATION & EMPOWERMENT POSITIVE EXPECTATIONS & SENSE OF RESPONSIBILITY ASSESSMENT OF TEACHING & LEARNING TESTING TO FAILSELF ASSESSMENT DIAGNOSTIC/ PEER ASSESSMENT
Instructive vs. Interactive Quiet vs. Silent Noise vs. Hum Movement vs. Activity Lock step vs. ‘In step’ Traditional vs. Innovative Mechanical vs. Automated Work vs. Task Time vs. Timing Seating vs. Setting Testing vs. Assessment Inside-the-box vs. Out-of-the-box
Let’s define thinking: Not limiting i.e. considers all dimensions All encompassing i.e. considers all perspectives A portal to observation, exploration, experimentation, creativity and innovation Provides a range of options, possibilities, opportunities
Thinking, according to Costa (1996), is seen not only in the number of answers students already know but also in their knowing what to do when they don’t know”. In his view, intelligent behaviour is in the manner of the individuals’ responses to questions and problems to which they do not immediately know the answer. Teachers concerned with promoting thinking should therefore try to observe how students produce knowledge rather than how they merely reproduce knowledge. Here, the criterion for thinking is knowing how to act on information which one already has.
Cohen (1971) identified four key thinking strategies: Problem Solving - using basic thinking processes to solve a known or defined difficulty Decision Making - using basic thinking processes to choose a best response among several options Critical Thinking - using basic thinking processes to analyse arguments and generate insights into particular meanings and interpretations Creative Thinking - using basic thinking processes to develop or invent novel, aesthetic, constructive ideas, or products, related to precepts as well as concepts, and stressing the intuitive aspects of thinking as much as the rational.
Inquisitive Child: 'Why do my teeth wobble?' Mum: 'Because they need to come out.' IC: 'Why?' Mum : 'To make room for new ones.' IC: 'What's wrong with the old ones?' Mum : 'They're not big enough for when you're grown up.' IC: 'Why?' Mum (getting a bit rattled): 'Because your mouth will be bigger.' IC: 'Why don't I just get more teeth the same?' Mum (really frustrated now): 'Oh, go and ask Daddy!'
Questioning continues: Q. What is another word for this? (knowledge) Q. What is the difference between these two words?(comprehension) Q. How can I use this word in a sentence? (application) Q. Why has the author used this simile? (analysis) Q. What simile would you have used if you were the author? (synthesis) Q. I don’t like the ending. Can I change it?(evaluation)
Open and Closed Questions Convergent and Divergent Lower order and higher order General and specific Probing vs. Leading Extending and paraphrasing Rhetorical Questions
Repeat the question, paraphrasing it. Redirect the question. Ask probing questions Promote a discussion among the students.
Directly answer the question. Postpone answering the question. Discourage inappropriate questions.
Ask open-ended, not just close-ended questions. Ask divergent as well as convergent questions. Wait, pauses and silence are not inappropriate class behaviors. Wait, give the students time to think. Wait, or you will establish an undesirable norm.
Ask for questions. Answer questions. Answer students questions adequately. Listen to the question, or to any student comments Do not put down the students.
Vertical Thinking Lateral Thinking Chooses Changes Looks for what is right Looks for what is different One thing must follow directly from another Makes deliberate jumps Concentrates on relevance Welcomes chance intrusions Moves in the most likely directions Explores the least likely directions Lateral Thinking versus Vertical Thinking
Teach children problem solving techniques as they will be a valuable life skill for the child, now and when they are in their adult years. Encourage children to persevere with a problem to try to find an answer. Encourage children to recognize that one problem may have a number of possible answers. Help children to understand that some problems do not have an easy answer. That is just life. It is not a failure on their part. Help children to master the art of lateral thinking, as this will help them to find creative ways to solve their difficulties and in turn will encourage the child to feel good about themselves, and develop high self esteem.
Try these lateral thinking activities with the children. Ask the children to either write down their answers, or one by one call out answers and write a list on the board. Ask the children in groups how many uses they could find for a blanket? Ask the children in groups to identify all the things that are red? Ask the children how many uses they could find for an empty tin can? Ask the children how many uses they could find for a wire coat hanger? Ask the children how many uses they could find for a 2 metre length of string? Show a picture and ask the children what they think this picture could be:
Active Learning is the Focus: Involve students: they should work as hard as you do! Background Knowledge is the Foundation: Start where your students are. Choices Add Interest: Giving choices builds ownership with your students. Data: More than the Numbers: Use multiple sources of data to inform your instruction. Expect the Best: Expect the best through your words, actions, and from one another. Focus on Your Purpose: Plan based on purpose—why, what, and how. Graphic Organizers: Students are visual learners—help them organize that way. Help Me: Provide support for every student.
I’m Listening…or Am I?: Teach your students to listen, not just to hear. Just for Me: Differentiate what you teach, how you teach, and how students demonstrate understanding. Kick It Up: Add rigor to your classroom Literacy for Everyone: Literacy is a tool for communication to be integrated into all subject areas. Making It Real: Help your students see the relevance of instruction. Next Steps: Help students break down a task. Options for Successful Homework: Structure homework so students see the value.
Perspective and Points of View: Help students see varying perspectives. Questioning Strategies: Effective questioning is one of the most important tools in your toolbox. Reflection Adds Depth to Learning: Give opportunities for students to think about what Show Them What You Are Thinking: Modeling makes a difference. Turn The Tables: Help students take responsibility for their own learning. Understand Your Audience: You can’t teach what or who you don’t know. Victory with Vocabulary: Move beyond memorization to help students truly understand new words and concepts
Working Together Makes a Difference: Effective cooperative learning requires structure. X-Factor: Keep your charisma and your humor going Yawn! Reading Aloud is Boring: Find successful ways to engage all students in reading. Zoom In and Zoom Out: Focus in on small details, but also zoom out to get the big picture