Friday, January 19, 2007

Building a Culture of Thinking In a Classroom

Today I was asked where the solutions were to the puzzles & problem solving activities on my website. My response in a nutshell is that I think the teacher should work out the solution with the students :)

Here is my full response.

Dear ...

I have a saying in my class, 'This is Problem Solving, NOT Solution Showing' lol

I believe that we teachers need to demonstrate being lifelong learners. We need to discuss the metacognition behind solving problems. We need to discuss process, frustration thresholds and the eventual 'A-ha' feeling we get by persevering and experiencing success. It is not the answer here that is the learning, it is the process one goes through to achieve a solution.

I've put hints on the webpage to guide teachers and students as the week unfolds towards a solution, but I have chosen not to post solutions so that problems will be solved rather having people do a quick web search to find the solution.

We need to build thinking cultures in our classrooms and solving a problem alongside our students is a great start. Plus, I believe it is important that teachers show that they are not the fountain of all wisdom and that we do get it wrong sometimes. I feel that it is especially good for boys to see male teachers not professing to know everything. (Sorry guys hehehe)




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