BACKGROUND: The Cultures of Thinking Project is a global initiative under the direction of Dr. Ron Ritchhart, a Principal Investigator and Senior Research Associate at Project Zero, Harvard Graduate School of Education. Since 2000, the Cultures of Thinking Project has worked with hundreds of public, independent, and international schools and museums across North America, Australia, and Europe to help transform schools, classrooms, and museums into places where thinking is valued, visible and actively promoted as part of the regular day-to-day experience of all group members.
WORKSHOP OVERVIEW: Learning is a product of thinking. If we want our students to learn well and develop understanding, we must create cultures of thinking that actively engage students in thinking on an ongoing basis. However, this isn’t always an easy task. Schools and classrooms are not always set up to encourage thinking. Furthermore, by its very nature, thinking is a rather invisible and elusive process. How do we as teachers promote students’ thinking, recognize it when it occurs, and make thoughtfulness permeate our classrooms? To create a culture of thinking, educators must work together to create a school environment whose structure and purpose actively encourage a high level of student thinking, both individually as well as collectively, and where the thinking of all group members is regularly promoted, valued, made visible, and pushed further as a part of the ongoing, shared enterprise of the group.
During the workshop, we will focus on the practical and concrete ways educators can create a culture of thinking in their schools and classrooms, foster the kinds of thinking opportunities that lead to deep understanding of content, and how to look for evidence of student thinking and understanding. Participants will be introduced to a variety of thinking routines: what they are and how they can be used to create more thoughtful classrooms. We will explore such questions as:
Ron Ritchhart is a Senior Research Associate at Harvard Project Zero and Fellow at the University of Melbourne, Australia. His current research focuses on developing intellectual character, making thinking visible, and enhancing school and classroom culture to promote deep learning. Ron's research and writings, particularly his theory of intellectual character and his framework for understanding group culture, have informed the work of schools, museums, and organizations throughout the world.
Ron’s best-selling book, Making Thinking Visible, co-authored with Mark Church and Karin Morrison, has popularized the use of thinking routines in educational settings. In his most recent book, Creating Cultures of Thinking, Ron couples the real classroom practice of teachers with whom he has worked with recent educational research on learning to illuminate how schools and classrooms can be transformed to develop the learners and thinkers we need for the 21st century. Howard Gardner has called the book “ a tour de force” for Ron’s ability to seamlessly merge theory, research, practice and application together in a highly accessible and engaging manner.
Ron currently directs the Worldwide Cultures of Thinking Project, aimed at facilitating deep learning and powerful thinking in classrooms, schools, and organizations. Bialik College and Melbourne Grammar School in Melbourne Australia, Oakland County Schools in Michigan, Mandela International Magnet School in Santa Fe, and both Washington International School and International School of Amsterdam have been key partners in Ron’s research. This combination of private, public, and international schools has served as the prime sites for developing the core practices and school-based evidence that surround Cultures of Thinking.
October 23, 2019
Includes lunch and refreshments