Teach for Thinking

Students working in small groups in a classroom

“There is no secret to teaching for thinking.”

Students learn from what teachers do as much, if not more, than from what they say. To teach for thinking one must show a passionate disposition toward thinking and explicitly and reflectively use thinking skills to form reasoned judgments. Educators must demonstrate thinking in multiple contexts including those that are rich in subject matter content and problem-complexity.  The more a teacher is able to extend students’ thinking into new domains of learning and inquiry, demanding solid content knowledge and the correct application of standards and methods appropriate to the domain, the stronger students’ thinking will become. It is a matter of active engagement, thoughtful reflection and reasonable reformulations of judgments.

The most successful teacher will be the one who is able to both nurture and challenge thinking. Students must know that teachers demand good thinking, test for good thinking and reward good thinking in their grading practices.  They must also know that teachers have every reason to expect students to think to the fullest of their abilities.”  (Dr. Peter Facione & Dr. Carol Gittens)

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