Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Higher Order Thinking Skills- Quescussion

Higher Order Thinking Skills- Quescussion

"Quescussion" is a strategy invented by Paul Bidwell in the University of Saskatchewan English Department. The Quescussion strategy represents a shift from making statements to starting to wonder and ask questions. The participants make points as in a normal discussion, but the use of statements is forbidden. Follow these instructions to try the Quescussion strategy:
  • Provide a trigger (such as a poem, topic or theme). The trigger might be a problem to be solved, a provocative question or statement, some text or a key word, a video clip, a multimedia presentation, or a website to be analyzed or discussed.
  • Have students participate in a discussion that only contains questions.
  • Have participants yell “Statement” or make a sound if anyone makes a statement rather than asking a question). Note: This is monitored by the class.
  • Do not raise your hand.
  • Open-ended questions are preferred to closed questions. “What?”, “Why?” “How?” rather than “Is it true that...?”
  • Try to ask questions about feeling as well as facts, try to ask simple knowledge questions as well as sophisticated questions.
  • Humor is encouraged, sarcasm is discouraged.
  • A question does not have to be directly related to the previous question.
Note: This strategy prompts students to reflect on a topic and then extend their thinking by generating follow-up questions. For example, Trigger = Hamlet. This is followed by discussion, “Who is Hamlet?”, and, “Why is Hamlet in the play?”

WEBSITE:
The Center for Teaching & Learning

Quote from Website: "Quescussion, as the name indicates, is a type of discussion that is conducted entirely in the form of questions (think Alex Trebek). The professor asks a question or makes a statement to the class (this question should be projected on the screen)."

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VIDEO:
Inquiry-Based Learning: Good Inquiry Questions

This video highlights the fundamentals of an inquiry-based questioning strategy called Quescussion.

 


After exploring the strategy, consider and discuss the following questions using social media with #HEATFramework or posting your response by clicking on Reply below:
  • What guidelines must you consider when using Quescussion with your students?
  • How could you utilize Quescussion in your classroom? 
  • What challenges would you face in utilizing Quescussion?
  • Do you have other resources or ideas you would suggest for educators exploring ways of fostering student-generated questions?

#HEATFramework


Higher Order Thinking Skills- Thesis Statements

Higher Order Thinking Skills- Thesis Statements

Follow these instructions to try the Thesis Statements strategy:
  1. As part of the writing process, have students write down a thesis statement on the classroom interactive white board, white board, or chalkboard.
  2. Next, have students take their interactive white board markers and generate two questions relating to the thesis statement. If no interactive white board exists, then use sticky notes. The questions can include any question type (e.g., clarifying, probing, hypothesizing), but must relate directly to the thesis statement.
For example, if the thesis statement stated, "The $700 billion bail-out of Wall Street by Congress and the President was an ill-conceived plan to solve the major economic crisis of 2008." then possible questions might be, "What if the government had no other choice?", "To what extent will this plan help the everyday citizen living on Main Street?", and "What accountability measures are in place to ensure that the $700 billion loan is repaid?"

WEBSITE:
The Center for Teaching and Learning

Quote from Website: "A thesis statement is a sentence (or sentences) that expresses the main ideas of your paper and answers the question or questions posed by your paper. It offers your readers a quick and easy to follow summary of what the paper will be discussing and what you as a writer are setting out to tell them."


After exploring the strategy, consider and discuss the following questions using social media with #HEATFramework or posting your response by clicking on Reply below:
  • What guidelines must you consider when using Thesis Statements with your students?
  • How could you utilize Thesis Statements in your classroom? 
  • What challenges would you face in utilizing Thesis Statements?
  • Do you have other resources or ideas you would suggest for educators exploring ways of fostering student-generated questions?

#HEATFramework


Higher Order Thinking Skills- Questioning Toolkit

Higher Order Thinking Skills- Questioning Toolkit

Review information about using the Questioning Toolkit strategy at the link below, then follow the instructions to try the strategy:

Implementation Option #1: 
  1. Have students select a type of question (e.g., hypothetical, inventive, probing, clarifying) for the class period, entire day, or entire week from the Questioning Tookit.
  2. Next, have them generate questions orally for that question type relating to the content introduced in class.
Implementation Option #2:
  1. Create a class folder for each of the types of questions in the Questioning Toolkit and display on the wall.
  2. Anytime a student asks one of these question types, reward the student by having him/her write down the question and placing their question in the correct folder. This process will help students categorize their questions and build greater sensitivity and awareness that different types of questions do exist and have value.

WEBSITE:
The Questioning Toolkit

Quote from Website: "Portions of the Questioning Toolkit should be introduced as early as Kindergarten so that students can bring powerful questioning technologies and techniques with them as they arrive in high school."

WEBSITE:
The Thinkers Toolbox

This website includes strategies for sharing the Questioning Toolkit with students.

After exploring the strategy, consider and discuss the following questions using social media with #HEATFramework or posting your response by clicking on Reply below:
  • What guidelines must you consider when using questioning strategies with your students?
  • How could you utilize the Questioning Toolkit in your classroom? 
  • What challenges would you face in utilizing the Questioning Toolkit?
  • Do you have other resources or ideas you would suggest for educators exploring ways of fostering student-generated questions?

#HEATFramework


Monday, September 12, 2016

Discussion Excerpt from the LoTi Classroom Course: Higher Order Thinking Skills

DISCUSSION: Higher Order Thinking & Cognitive Complexity

Most of the time when teachers are asked why they are teaching at the lower levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy, they suggest that students must understand the basics before they can tackle more complicated tasks at the higher cognitive levels. Unfortunately, many teachers never venture into the higher levels of student cognition. Enabling students to synthesize new information and/or revise their thinking about existing factual knowledge is a pivotal 21st Century Skill. 

In this activity, you will discuss with your colleagues the concept of cognitive complexity as it relates to integrating higher level thinking processes in your instructional setting. Consider the questions below.

  • How can lessons be structured to help students move beyond basic content understanding?
  • What critical thinking skills will our students need to succeed as life-long learners?
  • As a teacher, how can I promote higher-level questioning from my students?
  • How can Bloom's Taxonomy or Webb's Depth of Knowledge assist in elevating the level of student cognition  in the classroom?

You are expected to participate in this activity in one of two ways. You can either post your response to one or more of the above questions using social media with #HEATFramework or using the Moodle Discussion below. Either way, we encourage you to post ONE initial response and to reply to the post of at least ONE colleague. Since you have the option of posting within this Moodle course or by social media, this activity is set to mark as completed on your own.

#HEATFramework

Moodle Discussion


If you choose to participate in this discussion in Moodle instead of the social media sites, click on the Discuss This Topic Link below.

Note: Once you have participated in the Discussion either by replying below or posting in social media, you will be able to check this activity as completed on the home page of this course.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

H- Higher Order Thinking Strategy- Staged Scenarios

H- Higher Order Thinking

Staged Scenarios

Staged scenarios are an effective way to generate student questions on a topic that would not occur naturally. Consider the principal and staff members who plan a stage scenario beginning with the principal sharing his staged concern with students about the unattractive state of the school grounds in anticipation of an important government official, celebrity, or star athlete visiting the school campus. His concern later serves as needed impetus for students to start landscaping projects that incorporate important science (e.g., percolation and compaction, plant growth, soil composition, scientific method) and math concepts (e.g., number sense, geometry, estimation). Click on one of the links below to explore more about staged scenarios in the classroom. Use the H.E.A.T. Lesson Plan Scoring Guide as a reference when choosing a strategy.

Higher-Order Thinking- The task requires students operating at the higher levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy (e.g., Analyzing, Evaluating, Creating).

Level 6- Student learning/questioning at Evaluating/ Creating levels
Level 5- Student learning/questioning at Analyzing level

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VIDEO 1:
Edutopia- Teaching Students to Work Together

This video shows a middle school staged scenario involving a Simulated Hurricane.

VIDEO 1:
Teaching the Declaration of Independence as Break Up Letter

This video shows a high school staged scenario involving a “Break-Up” Letter.
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WIKI:
Transformation and Technology: A New Way of Learning – Classroom Scenarios

This website has a breakdown of suggested staged scenarios from K-2, 3-5, 6-8, and 9-12 with accompanying lesson plans.

After exploring the videos or the wiki, consider and discuss the following questions via social media with #HEATFramework or by posting your response by clicking on Comment below:
  • What guidelines must you consider when creating a staged scenario to use with your students?
  • How could you utilize a staged scenario in your classroom?
  • What challenges would you face in utilizing staged scenarios?
  • Do you have other resources or ideas you would suggest for educators exploring staged scenarios?

#HEATFramework

CLICK ON THE
Comment Link
below or
post to
Social Media
to participate
in this activity

 

If you are interested in reviewing our free course, Increasing Student Rigor with H.E.A.T., contact us at  info@loticonnection.com

H.E.A.T. Framework Strategies- Teaching Students to Ask Better Questions

H.E.A.T. Framework Strategies

The H.E.A.T Framework provides a context to assess student learning experiences at the operational curriculum level and offers a practical set of descriptors for classroom walkthroughs, peer coaching/mentoring interventions, and lesson plan evaluations. By turning up the H.E.A.T., students are given the chance to apply or transfer critical content to contextual situations that involve high levels of engagement, critical thinking, and increased relevance. The result is improved student academic achievement as well as improved teaching and learning.

Since collaboration allows us to work together toward the achievement of the common goal of improving teaching and learning, the LoTi team encourages everyone to participate in our social media discussions with new ideas using the Online LoTi Classroom, Facebook, Twitter, and the LoTi Guy Speaks Blog. We welcome your participation in the discussions by completing one or more of the posted strategies. If possible, implement the strategies in your classroom. If you do not have a classroom, find a classroom that you can work with or try implementing one of the strategies in a professional learning session or meeting that you attend. Use #HEATFramework to connect your post to the overall discussion. Let's build a list of H.E.A.T. Strategies that makes classroom planning more effective.

H- Higher Order Thinking Strategy

Teaching Students to Ask Better Questions

Since it is critical that students increase their capacity for higher level thinking and questioning while still learning the content, teachers need to explore multiple strategies in their classroom. Let's explore sample strategies aimed at promoting higher level thinking and questioning in the classroom. Use the H.E.A.T. Lesson Plan Scoring Guide as a reference when choosing a strategy.

Higher-Order Thinking- The task requires students operating at the higher levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy (e.g., Analyzing, Evaluating, Creating).

Level 6- Student learning/questioning at Evaluating/ Creating levels
Level 5- Student learning/questioning at Analyzing level
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VIDEO 1:
How Might We…?

Quote from Website: "A properly framed How Might We doesn’t suggest a particular solution, but gives you the perfect frame for innovative thinking."

 

VIDEO 2:
Teaching Channel- Tips To Have Students Ask Better Questions

This website shows classroom modeling of question strategies.


After exploring the videos, consider and discuss the following questions via social media with #HEATFramework or by posting your response by clicking on Comment below:
  • What guidelines must you consider when creating question starters with your students?
  • How could you utilize question starters in your classroom? 
  • What challenges would you face in utilizing question starters?
  • Do you have other resources or ideas you would suggest for educators exploring ways of fostering student-generated questions?

#HEATFramework

CLICK ON THE
Comment Link
below or
post to
Social Media
to participate
in this activity


If you are interested in reviewing our free course, Increasing Student Rigor with H.E.A.T., contact us at  info@loticonnection.com.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Building Effective Plans for Digital Teaching and Learning

How do you develop an effective plan for digital learning that yields a sustainable impact on teacher innovation, college and career readiness, academic progress, and student engagement in the classroom? Try Integrating the results from the LoTi Digital Age Survey with the Six Sigma improvement process. The results might surprise you.

The fundamental objective of the Six Sigma methodology is the implementation of a measurement-based strategy that focuses on process improvement (e.g., define, measure, plan, implement, analyze, improve). Since most school districts use some form of self-assessment as a means of data gathering, applying a modified version of the Six Sigma to the planning process can ensure that Digital Teaching and Learning plans include targeted, measureable outcomes that strive to eliminate wasteful digital practices and concentrate on instructional methodologies and strategies that elevate the level of digital learning in districts over the long term.

The LoTi Digital Age Survey is a research-based, empirically-validated self-assessment that integrates several popular metrics including LoTi (Levels of Teaching Innovation), H.E.A.T. (Higher order thinking, Engaged learning, Authentic connections, Technology use), SAM-R (Substitution, Augmentation, Modification, Redefinition), and ISTE Standards for Teachers and Leaders to provide individual teachers with an individualized dashboard to track their progress related to digital teaching and learning. The survey also aggregates data from a series of customizable pre-survey questions to pinpoint specific gaps in a school district’s approach to digital learning. For example, what impact might a school district initiative such as peer coaching have on the level of digital learning in the classroom? (See Figure 1.)

Figure 1

In this instance, the table shows a moderate negative correlation between peer coaching feedback and the level of digital learning (-0.51). What implications might this finding have for the development of a digital learning plan? One suggestion might be the inclusion of specific professional learning into the digital learning plan that focuses on a Train-the-Facilitator model emphasizing digital learning best practices.

Using data thoughtfully to drive change is not a new concept. What is novel is looking at data differently in unexpected areas of digital learning (e.g., school climate, peer coaching, shared vision) that can ensure that digital learning dollars achieve their strongest level of impact for all school stakeholders.