March 23, 2023 Training

The Thinking Classroom by Jennifer Gonzalez on

Methodology built on 14 principles

– These are definitely primarily towards a math classroom, but it has concepts that apply. For example, the point is to keep learners engaged and to give them the opportunity to lead their own learning. Allowing learners to do frequent activities, even before the content has been covered, gives them independence and prevents them from disengaging. It’s important to consider ways that mix up and challenge what we are used to doing while learning so that we don’t automatically check out because similar things have felt like they wasted our time before.

Non thinking has become so common in classrooms that it is rarely challenged

Instead of how it happens in a typical classroom, class does not start with instruction. It starts with task assignment and practice and instruction is given as needed.

– This removes the learners ability to be passive and instead explore first

This prioritizes working vertically (like on a wall-mounted whiteboard) for small groups to work

– it evens the playing field and makes it more difficult for learners to work individually

– Non-permanence of whiteboards encourages students to try things

– Students feeling anonymous or forgotten disengage, which is easier to do while sitting

Uses visibly random groups. When students enter groups by choice, they assume they don’t need to do work. Random groups reduces barriers and stress and encourages knowledge mobility and enthusiasm

Transition from student led exploration to individual practice. Have the instructor guide the learners through this.

– Learners should be able to identify what they’ve learned and practiced