Edublog: Uncovering Wisdom through Pedagogy

#Open Classroom 23: Creative Problem-Solving (CPS) in the English Literature Classroom

Year / Subject: Year Two English Literature
Unit: Poetry
Topic: Tone and Visual Imagery in Poetry
Lesson Title: Eye on the Prize/Poem
Lesson Objectives: Students will be able to:

  • Recognize the presence of literary devices that appeal primarily to the eye in literary works (in particular the poetic form);
  • Appreciate and analyze how a writer’s intentional employment of visual imagery conveys tone—and thus poetic meaning—through engaging with and revising a variety of poetic works.

Teaching Strategies:

    • CPS: SCAMPER; force-fitting
    • Differentiated Instruction: Differentiation by readiness
    • Teacher-led modelling
    • Learning scaffolds
    • Technology-based Learning Approach

ICT tools: Google Classroom; Google Documents

Overview:

Insofar as creativity has been incorporated in one form or another into the classroom, it has often been sidelined as a nominal option either to be activated only when classroom time is at a premium (itself already a rare occurrence) or worse, solely for the preserve of more-ready or -able students (premised on the misguided interpretation that ‘Creation,’ as the highest rung on Bloom’s taxonomy, is an act out of reach of the average student); this is particularly—and ironically—observed in the English Literature classroom, arguably the most conducive for developing creativity in students: creative writing assignments, if they even occur, tend to be formative, cursory, or ‘low-stakes’ in nature as opposed to summative assessments, which remain focused on critical and evaluative responses (that often answer to the New Criticism paradigm, one of the many approaches to literary studies). Put otherwise, the belief that creativity is predisposition rather than disposition persists.

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The Hook of Visible Thinking in the Learning Process

“I am teaching, but are they learning?”, “What works best for learning?”… these are some questions that we, classroom teachers, often ask. As such, every classroom teacher seeks to create meaningful and powerful learning opportunities which promote authentic intellectual engagement that leads to deep understanding.

This article will offer insights into lesson enactment (STP, 2017) with a thinking focus, e.g. how the powers of thought can be shaped and communicated through Visible Thinking Routines like “See, Think, Wonder”. The tool will activate students’ prior knowledge, engage students in meaningful inquiry and application, develop students’ thinking and new understandings and connect learning to the larger world. In a nutshell, when students are engaged in the process of  “Learning to Think, Thinking to Learn” , they will LEARN as they are actively engaged in thought processes. (more…)

#Open Classroom 22: Experiential Learning in a Chemistry Classroom

The term “digital natives” gets thrown about a lot when describing the new generation of learners that was born into the technology age. While I (a digital immigrant) was familiar with some technology before I started, being at RGS taught me new ways of teaching, with an emphasis on ICT-enabled lessons. After some time, I decided to do things the way I had learnt as a student – the experiential way – using Post-It notes, lab demos and Legos. Here are some ways in which tangible objects helped me drive across lesson objectives with some degree of success. (more…)

#Open Classroom 21: Use of Thinking Routines in Upper Secondary Chemistry Curriculum

In a sharing session that was conducted during Good Practice Day 2019 in RGS, I shared with the teachers on various examples of thinking routines that I had used over the course of teaching the upper secondary Chemistry curriculum.  I had embarked on this journey after reading the book Making Thinking Visible by Ritchhart, Church & Morrison (2011).  My initial attempt at the routines was the easy- to-use routine, See Think Wonder, which was easily adopted by teachers new to thinking routines.  After the initial attempt, I decided to adopt more routines that lend itself to the particular purpose.

In the sharing session, I shared the about the objectives, the organization of the different thinking routines which I had glean for a Visible Thinking Workshop by AST and from the authors of Making Thinking Visible.  (more…)

#Open Classroom 20: Differentiation in a Chemistry Classroom

When I first joined the school, I thought the distribution in each classroom would be homogeneous. I quickly learnt that it was not and consequently, I have tried to consciously incorporate more differentiation into the classroom. Here are 2 topics where the use of different worksheets for groups of different ability were helpful.

  1. Teaching mole concept questions using QR codes

QR codes were used as a tool to gather responses and give feedback.

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#Open Classroom 19: Nurturing Creativity in a Higher Tamil Classroom

Subject and Level: Higher Tamil Language – Year 2
Theme and  Sub Theme: Creativity
Topic: The Strong and The Weak  (வலியதும் எளியதும்)
Enduring Understanding: Students understand how to think critically and read between the lines.

Students understand how a simple analogy enables one to convey a concept easily without having to write a lot.

Students understand how to show empathy towards those who are physically weak and/or have difficulties in learning.

Do not hurt people who lead humble lives.

Subject – Specific Skills Writing Skills – Analogy writing as well as how to create curiosity in the reader. Creative and Critical thinking.
Pedagogical Focus / Lens Think – Pair- Share, Bloom’s Taxonomy,

MI – Developing logical-mathematical Intelligence

Grouping by Readiness

The class were divided into three different groups based on their ability and interest. (more…)

#Open Classroom 18: Differentiation and Visible Thinking in a Chemistry Classroom

Subject Chemistry
Level Secondary 3
Name of Teacher Mrs Rachel Pang
Topic Atomic Structure
Enduring  Understandings

 

Atomic models evolve over time and facilitate better prediction and understanding of atomic interactions.
Curricular or Pedagogical Focus / Lens

 

  • Critical Thinking/ Visible Thinking
  • Differentiation

This lesson is the 3rd lesson on Atomic Structure. In the first lesson, the students have learnt the definition of isotopes and sub particles of an atom. In the second lesson, the students researched on the history of the atomic model based on their scientist chosen.

The activity is designed for collaborative learning & differentiated instruction is used so that students would stay engaged. (more…)

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