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What ideas look like

What does an idea look like? How is defining different than categorizing? How can we think deeper? Find out here.

Jason Charles

on 15 August 2011

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Transcript of What ideas look like

When we think of classrooms,we often picture a teacher instructing students. The teacher is the one with the idea, and he or she works hard to pass it along to the students. But if the classroom were a factory,
wouldn't it be better to have 30 people
doing the work instead of just one? In order to take an active roll in their thinking, our students need to be trained to visualize what thinking actually looks like. The business world knows something
that classrooms sometimes take for granted. . . . Employers know it's crucial to train workers to use the tools they need to do their jobs well... and since the students' work is thinking, they need to be trained how to think. What ideas look like


The Content Imperatives
by Sandra Kaplan Organizing our thoughts


Thinking Maps by David Hyerle Deeper Thinking


Icons of Depth
and Complexity also by Sandra Kaplan This small idea tranforming
a classroom of passive listeners
into a workshop of active learners These are three tools I use in my classroom every day to help students roll up their sleeves and do the lion's share of the thinking. This will help them to form organize and express their thoughts. These represent what happens in our heads when we create ideas. Any mental work we do looks like one of these icons. Shakespeare Romeo
Juliet Hamlet Macbeth Origins Convergence Contribution Paradox day night suspect motive victim 3
doves 2
hens A
partridge in a
pear tree 2+2+3+3 2(2+3) Parallel Parallel Mammal Ecosystem Carnivorous Tunra shading foreground colors background texture medium perspective scale We need students to do the thinking work. can have a huge impact Instead of telling students that Shakespeare wrote "Hamlet," "Macbeth," and "Romeo and Juliet," the teacher asks them to decide with a partner what relationship the plays have to one another and prove it. The teacher works hard preparing before class so the students think hard during class. defining classifying comparing/contrasting describing sequencing cause & effect seeing analogies whole/part
relationships These are tasks the students will complete to demonstrate real understanding and launch their activities. Today's Goal: My partner and I will analyze the causes and effects that contribute to Piggy's death by creating a multi-flow map.

Activity: Each team member will represent one of the causes that contribute to Piggy's death. All events will be put on trial and defend themselves using details from the text. The class will vote on each event's guilt/innocence. Piggy's Death Causes Effects These images help students think deeper than the textbook, or even the state standards ask them to. Why should they? Because they are curious, and it's fun, and (no matter what they say) all kids want to learn more about something they like. These icons also promote student interest and free choice. Now that we have read several different types of texts about the "value of human life," select three of the icons and explore how they connect to our topic. Write one paragraph each. Kids are now connecting the thoughts and products they create in class to the world at large across content and disciplines. In this class, we flip things around. It's about teaching kids to think for themselves. But they never have a class in it! English Science Math
History P.E. Health Is Hamlet crazy? What would have happened if the story took place in today's world? How are heroes like enzymes? Would I vote for a President who has the power to win any argument?
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