Thursday, June 11, 2015

Mindsets in the Classroom {Chapter 4}

Book Study Photo

Today’s chapter is all about the importance of critical thinking in a growth mindset classroom. 
Chapter 4 Frame

The chapter begins by talking about the 3 types of critical thinking: reasoning, making judgments/decisions, and problem solving.  The author makes a critical distinction between everyday decision making and the type of decision making necessary for critical thinking.  Ricci explains that it’s our job as educators to give our students opportunities for DEEP and CRITICAL thinking, that critical thinking is not a skill that is taught and then they have mastered it.  It is a process of strategies rather than a set of skills. 
I loved the connection the author made to the critical thinking that is embedded in several of the 8 Mathematical Processes.  This immediately made me think of Number Talks.  If you have been reading my blog for any length of time you know that I am a HUGE fan of Number Talks.  As part of the Number Talk process students must:
  • Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them. (Practice #1)
  • Reason abstractly and quantitatively.  (Practice #2)
  • Construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others.  (Practice #3)
Another connection I made was to the problem solving that we do in our math journals.  After having time to solve and reason in their journals, I give students time to talk to their peers about how they solved the problem.  This process emphasizes the same three Mathematical Practices.

Grab these Math Journal Prompts free from my store!  Just click on the picture above!
Next year, I plan on continuing with Number Talks and Math Journals.  I also plan on looking into many of the games the author mentioned in the chapter to build reasoning skills.  My friend Heather at Learning with Mrs. Langley just shared the other day that she put together a Donor’s Choose project for some STEM supplies.  That got me thinking, I may put together a project to fund some reasoning games to use to increase critical thinking and help my students learn the importance of perseverance and effort. 

Here are a few of the games:
I can’t wait to read what everyone is thinking after reading chapter 4.  Don’t forget to link up at Hello Sunshine!

1 comment:

  1. Great post! I love all the games and activities that you shared with us for critical thinking activities.