New Langwitches Post: 3 Things I Wish Educators Knew About Their Own Learning

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Silvia Rosenthal Tolisano has a new post on her Langwitches blog where she outlines what she wishes educators knew about their own learning:

“I meet many educators around the world, virtually and in person… Many times, I am still amazed at the resistance to new ideas, change and willingness to apply the learning they expect of students to their own learning.

Here are the 3 things, above all, that I wish educators knew about their own learning.

  1. The understanding that we don’t know, what we don’t know!

How can we be resistant to pedagogy, tools and strategies that we have never experienced for learning ourselves? How can we try out new forms of teaching and learning, if we are not even aware they exist and play a vital role in the lives around us?

Read the rest of the post here.

New MindShift Piece on Visible Thinking

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Mindshift has a new and insightful post by Katrina Schwartz on the ways in which routines and structures for thinking can assist learners in making sense of and integrating new learning.

When Kids Have Structure for Thinking, Better Learning Emerges

“Amidst the discussions about content standards, curriculum and teaching strategies, it’s easy to lose sight of the big goals behind education, like giving students tools to deepen their quantitative and qualitative understanding of the world. Teaching for understanding has always been a challenge, which is why Harvard’s Project Zero has been trying to figure out how great teachers do it.

Some teachers discuss metacognition with students, but they often simplify the concept by describing only one of its parts — thinking about thinking. Teachers are trying to get students to slow down and take note of how and why they are thinking and to see thinking as an action they are taking. But two other core components of metacognition often get left out of these discussions — monitoring thinking and directing thinking. When a student is reading and stops to realize he’s not really understanding the meaning behind the words, that’s monitoring. And most powerfully, directing thinking happens when students can call upon specific thinking strategies to redirect or challenge their own thinking.”

Read the rest of the piece here.