ESSENTIAL QUESTIONS in TEACHING & LEARNING

This is a distance learning course, concentrating on uses of the Internet for teaching, learning and professional development. It also is intended to give you enough web sites and leads-in to more web sites to be a continuously useful resource for your learning and doing.

Assessment is based on work you produce in series of essays/listings for each Essential Question or topic you "connect with," and with an annotated lists of sites supporting your views and reflecting your web work. Note the Rubric for Course Portfolio Assessment.

For instance, you might write “The site XXXX [http://www.xxx.com] gave me a different perspective on how to help students learn _____. It also cleared up for me something I was confused about, and that is what educators mean by __________.” Certainly you would want to elaborate more.

This work may be emailed to me at ozpk100@aol.com, or snail-mailed to me at Chad C. Osborne 923 W. Mission St., Santa Barbara, CA 93101. If you email the work, you may wish to put it in a Zip file, which compresses text and makes it easier to send over the 'Net.


ESSENTIAL QUESTIONS in TEACHING and LEARNING

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Warning:

You are in the process of being indoctrinated. We have not yet evolved a system of education that is not a system of indoctrination. We are sorry, but it is the best we can do. What you are being taught here is an amalgam of current prejudice and the choices of this particular culture. The slightest look at history will show how impermanent these must be. You are being taught by people who have been able to accommodate themselves to a regime of thought laid down by their predecessors. It is a self-perpetuating system. Those of you who are more robust and individual than others, will be encouraged to leave and find ways of educating yourself-educating your own judgment. Those that stay must remember, always and all the time, that they are being molded and patterned to fit into the narrow and particular needs of this society. ~Doris Lessing, The Golden Notebook

WELCOME TO ESSENTIAL QUESTIONS in TEACHING and LEARNING--A Distance Learning {"Any time, Any place} Portfolio and Discussion Board Based Course of and about Essential Questions with Web Resources and Assignments. Work on these in any order you like, and feel free to turn any issue into a question and react to it. This course intends to give you many CHOICES of sites and viewpoints, many of them coming from teachers in your field of study.

Readings Used in Preparation of This Course

An underlying assumption for this course is that the current "teaching-to-the-test furor is both based on false ideas [see DEPTH vs. "COVERAGE" in TEACHING and STANDARDIZED TEST PREP] and on little understood historical and political factors behind current schooling and standardized testing [see ARE SCHOOLS INTENTIONALLY DUMBED DOWN?].

This page has the assignments and sites to be visited.

Key Course Search Sites: GOOGLE [Highest rated single search engine]

DOGPILE [Top rated multiple search engine].

Try to work at a pace of one good writing for each essential question selected per week. Each Question is seeking YOUR thoughts and opinions, based on the sites on this page. There are no predetermined answers, which is why it is important for you to explain your views. YOU are responsible for keeping up with web work.

Each Essential Question can at be addressed through Brainstorming and Creative Problem Solving. Check out sites on CREATIVITY to understand more of what this means.

ESSENTIAL QUESTION 1: WHAT DO YOU "MAKE" OF REFORM?

[Be sure your "answer" addresses the teacher test, MCAS, and curriculum content and process.]

Part 1: *1*Essay Excerpts by John Gatto suggest a true but little known series of historical contexts for today's testing controversy. Then consider the following:

HARD TRUTHS

Advocates of school reform would do well to consider the "Hard Truths" about the deep structure of schooling,Barbara Benham Tye explores in her book by this title (Teachers College Press, 2000). Consistent with the failure of past reform cycles to last beyond a three to five year cycle, and the lack of transfer of successful practices from one context to another, Tye? insights help explain why what can hope to be changed in schools are the ?ersonality factors?oving pieces around within a box. She favors change, but cautions that incremental change is the only kind that schooling can tolerate. The box, the deep structure, is not simply the factory-like structure of school organization, or the persistence of teacher-centered classroom traditions. Tye asserts it is the "conventional wisdom" of unexamined assumptions held in our culture. The ones she enumerates are

1. Schools are chaotic, dangerous places.
2. Teaching is an easy job, with lots of time off.
3. Too much money is spent on schools.
4. Schools today are not doing a good job of teaching the basics.
5. A quiet classroom is one where learning is taking place.
6. The most effective teaching is traditional frontal, and teacher-directed.
7. Children should be grouped by age and ability.
8. Parents should participate in running the schools.

Given these unexamined assumptions, and the influence they have in current society, is it any wonder that we have growing movements in

Charter Schools

Homeschooling, and

Unschooling?

  • *1*Psychological Bars To School Improvement -- Read and contemplate the four barriers discussed by this author of Schools of Hope, Douglas H. Heath: Not Listening to and Respecting Students; Trivializing the Value of Education; Creating Schools That Are Unhealthy Social Systems; and Stagnating in Denial.

    MCAS testing and the increasing teacher shortage are sure to fuel the continued growth of these movements.

    Case in Point 1: The Teacher Test and MCAS Testing.

    *1*MCAS: WHY IS THIS BEING DONE TO OUR KIDS?

    *1*Helps for MCAS Preparation for Teachers and Students**Check this site out!

    Gatto's UNDERGROUND HISTORY OF AMERICAN ECUCATION TOUR

    Differing Viewpoints

    STUDENT PERFORMANCE TODAY

    The State of the States

    Here is a final section for you to consider thoughtfully in this inquiry. Think about the role of thinking time in your own learning, of privacy and solitude, of these diminishing and essential ingredients of intelligence and intellectual and emotional growth. React to the reading in this inquiry.

    Excerpt from *1*Why Schools Don? Educate
    by John Taylor Gatto
    This is from the text of a speech by John Taylor Gatto accepting the New York City Teacher of the Year Award on January 31, 1990.

    Here is the calculus of time the children I teach must deal with:

    1. Out of the 168 hours in each week, my children sleep 56. That leaves them 112 hours a week out of which to fashion a self.
    2. My children watch 55 hours of television a week according to recent reports. That leaves them 57 hours a week in which to grow up.
    3. My children attend school 30 hours a week, use about 6 hours getting ready, going and coming home, and spend an average of 7 hours a week in homework - a total of 45 hours. During that time, they are under constant surveillance, have no private time or private space, and are disciplined if they try to assert individuality in the use of time or space.
    4. That leaves 12 hours a week out of which to create a unique consciousness.
    5. Of course, my kids eat, and that takes some time - not much, because they've lost the tradition of family dining, but if we allot 3 hours a week to evening meals,
    6. we arrive at a net amount of private time for each child of 9 hours [per week!].

    I want to tell you what the effect is on children of taking all their time from them - time they need to grow up - and forcing them to spend it on abstractions. You need to hear this, because no reform that doesn't attack these specific pathologies will be anything more than a facade.

    1. The children I teach are indifferent to the adult world. This defies the experience of thousands of years. A close study of what big people were up to was always the most exciting occupation of youth, but nobody wants to grow up these days and who can blame them? Toys are us.
    2. The children I teach have almost no curiosity and what they do have is transitory; they cannot concentrate for very long, even on things they choose to do. Can you see a connection between the bells ringing again and again to change classes and this phenomenon of evanescent attention?
    3. The children I teach have a poor sense of the future, of how tomorrow is inextricably linked to today. As I said before, they have a continuous present, the exact moment they are at is the boundary of their consciousness.
    4. The children I teach are ahistorical, they have no sense of how past has predestined their own present, limiting their choices, shaping their values and lives.
    5. The children I teach are cruel to each other, they lack compassion for misfortune, they laugh at weakness, and they have contempt for people whose need for help shows too plainly.
    6. The children I teach are uneasy with intimacy or candor. My guess is that they are like many adopted people I've known in this respect - they cannot deal with genuine intimacy because of a lifelong habit of preserving a secret inner self inside a larger outer personality made up of artificial bits and pieces of behavior borrowed from television or acquired to manipulate teachers. Because they are not who they represent themselves to be the disguise wears thin in the presence of intimacy so intimate relationships have to be avoided.
    7. The children I teach are materialistic, following the lead of schoolteachers who materialistically "grade" everything - and television mentors who offer everything in the world for free.
    8. The children I teach are dependent, passive, and timid in the presence of new challenges. This is frequently masked by surface bravado, or by anger or aggressiveness but underneath is a vacuum without fortitude.

    I could name a few other conditions that school reform would have to tackle if our national decline is to be arrested, but by now you will have grasped my thesis, whether you agree with it or not. Either schools have caused these pathologies, or television, or both. It's a simple matter [of] arithmetic, between schooling and television all the time the children have is eaten away. That's what has destroyed the American family, it is no longer a factor in the education of its own children. Television and schooling, in those things the fault must lie.

    Gatto's book, The Underground History of American Education (Oxford Village Press, 2000), gives complete background and sources for understanding the intentional "dumbing down" of public education to create a consumer and working class basis for commercial profit. Gatto says it was not a conspiracy as such that brought this about, but numerous factors and the implicit bargain of giving up our freedom and quality schooling in exchange for prosperity and a higher material quality of life. It is now becoming apparent, however, that the bar is set too low for either human good or the future prosperity of corporations.

    Do you agree? Before concluding this first question, read several of the online essays by John Taylor Gatto, especially *1*The Public School Nightmare: Why fix a system designed to destroy individual thought?

    ** ARE THERE ANY SOLUTIONS?

    ***1*Parker Charter Essential School in Ayer, Mass. (on the former Ft. Devens grounds) is the best example of a public school moving in the direction of a high quality, democratic education. Check out their curriculum, assessment, and other online resources!

    The ***1*Coalition of Essential Schools also has numerous links showing how SOME schools avoid the problems Gatto cites.

    **Tools for Small Schools has resources to aid in converting big schools into several smaller schools--the single most powerful reform method.

    **The *1*Catalog of School Reform Models lists numerous efforts to find better ways to educate students.

    **Empowering Students: Essential Schools' Missing Link shows the process and difficulties experienced as teachers turn more responsibility for learning over to students.

    **Lastly, two positive yet difficult directions for positive, productive reform are 1) Small Schools By Choice, meaning breaking big schools down into "houses" or "clusters" of 70-120 students each. This helps students and teachers to know each other better--and results in higher attendance, achivement, and less violence. Smaller school units also make it easier to bring about 2) Parent and Family Engagement as a Reform Strategy. Give consideration to both of these dimensions of reform in this inquiry.

    Essential Question 2: IN WHAT WAYS MIGHT I USE ASSESSMENT TO HELP MY STUDENTS LEARN MORE AND AT DEEPER LEVELS?

    [Be sure your "answer" addresses the impact of classroom assessment, multiple measures, especially RUBRICS,and self-evaluation.]

    If schools are to succeed, it will be due in large part to reforming assessment practices. The sites listed below reflect educators' efforts to assess deeper levels of understanding, higher levels of thinking, and student performance on more life-like tasks. Most authentic assessment, as indicated by the links below, moves from measuring fact memory to measuring indicators of understanding and thinking skills. Thus reformed assessment is key to overcoming negative effects of Standardized Testing with its effect of influencing teaching toward lower level knowledge-without-context.

      *1*ASSESSMENT by SUBJECT AREA

      English Language Arts

      If education reform is to succeed, it will be due in large part to the reform of assessment practices. The sites listed below reflect educators' efforts to assess deeper levels of understanding, higher levels of thinking, and student performance on more life-like tasks. Most authentic assessment, as indicated by the links below, moves from measuring fact memory to measuring indicators of understanding and thinking skills. Thus reformed assessment is key to overcoming negative effects of Standardized Testing with its effect of influencing teaching toward lower level knowledge-without-context.


        ASSESSMENT by SUBJECT AREA

        English Language Arts

      1. **Rubrics! -- Great site to help you evaluate students most fairly and to help them learn to self-evaluate in all areas of English!
      2. English Rubrics
      3. **Types of Assessment
      4. **Theory Meets Practice in Language Arts Assessment
      5. **English Rubrics for Grades 7, 8 and 9
      6. **Assessment Resources

        Mathematics

      7. **Rubrics! Great site to help you evaluate students most fairly and to help them learn to self-evaluate in all areas of Math!
      8. Math Rubrics
      9. **Types of Assessment
      10. **Assessment Resources
      11. **Assessment in Mathematics Teaching
      12. **ASSESSMENT IN MATH TEACHING
      13. **AUTHENTIC ASSESSMENT IN MATHEMATICS HOME PAGE

        Social Studies

      14. **Rubrics! Great site to help you evaluate students most fairly and to help them learn to self-evaluate in all areas of the Social Studies!
      15. Social Studies Rubrics
      16. **Assessment Resources
      17. **Types of Assessment

        Sciences

      18. **Rubrics! Great site to help you evaluate students most fairly and to help them learn to self-evaluate in all the sciences!
      19. Science Rubrics
      20. **Assessment Resources
      21. **Alternative Assessment In Science
      22. **ASSESSING STUDENT PERFORMANCE IN SCIENCE--ERIC Digest
      23. **California Portfolio Assessment in Science
      24. **Types of Assessment

      25. ASSESSMENT -- Critical issues and resources in assessment from Pathways for School Improvement
      26. Assessment in the Coalition of Essential Schools
      27. Using Outcomes
      28. Performances and Exhibitions: The Demonstration of Mastery
      29. TEACHING for HIGH STANDARDS --Eye-opening article on assessment in the broader context
      30. Student Self-Assessment: Making Standards Come Alive
      31. Rethinking Accountability -- Best balanced approach to assessment!
      32. LOOKING AT STUDENT WORK -- Fascinating sites reflecting recent efforts to take student work seriously as the focus for determining what needs to be done and improved in assessment.
      33. Model School Accountability Programs -- Best Practices in real schools!
      34. FAIR TEST PRINCIPLES AND INDICATORS -- What do testing authorities say ought to characterize fair uses of tests?
      35. TOOLBOX for ACCOUNTABILITY -- Best practice resources from the Annenburg Institute
      36. AUTHENTIC ASSESSMENT from Michigan Electronic Library -- Numerous sites to get a handle on authentic assessments
      37. USING RUBRICS -- Extensive array of exemplar and how-to sites
      38. PERFORMANCE ASSESSMENT -- ERIC summary of best insights into this topic
      39. Assessment in the Learning Organization -- Extensive online excerpts from an ASCD book!
      40. IMPROVING AMERICA'S SCHOOLS -- Newsletter putting alternative assessment in the context of educational reform
      41. RELATED LINKS -- Assessment research from UCLA
      42. TrackStar: ALTERNATIVE ASSESSMENTS AND PORTFOLIOS -- 27 links for specific subject areas and issues
      43. PORTFOLIOS IN ELEMENTARY & SECONDARY EDUCATION -- ERIC Digest of projects using portfolios as a teaching and assessing tool in classrooms
      44. AN INTRODUCTION TO USING PORTFOLIOS IN THE CLASSROOM
      45. PROJECT MOST: ASSESSMENT INDEX -- Chart of characteristics and advantages/uses of different modes of alternative assessment
      46. EXAMPLES OF CLASSROOM BASED ASSESSMENT -- Alaska's adaptation of Kentucky's authentic evaluation techniques for both process and content in all subjects
      47. LEADERSHIP RUBRIC -- Kentucky's tool for evaluating principals and other leaders
      48. SAMPLE ASSESSMENTS -- History, science, and mathematics assessment rubrics
      49. Types of Assessment
      50. Backward Design
      51. Establishing Curricular Priorities
      52. National Tests and Education Reform: Are They Compatible?
      53. Critical Issue: Rethinking Assessment and Its Role in Supporting Educational Reform [Read links from this key page!]
      54. ASSESSMENT TOOL KIT
      55. LOOKING AT STUDENT WORK
      56. THE AUTHENIC STANDARDS MOVEMENT AND ITS EVIL TWIN
      57. A Difficult but Awesome Design for Assessment
      58. WHOLE-CLASS SELF MONITORING
      59. RUBRICS! Superb Site!
      60. PARKER CHARTER SCHOOL [Click on "Curriculum & Assessment," and scroll down to yor subject area. Click here for evaluation RUBRICS in your discipline.]
      61. Assessment, Evaluation, and Curriculum Redesign
      62. AUTHENTIC ASSESSMENT
      63. Rethinking Accountability
      64. TESTING 1...2...3 Preparing students for Standardized Tests
      65. The Immorality of Giving tests for Grades in Teaching
      66. GRADE INFLATION
        and
      67. Lessons on Constructing Good Tests is a site with Power Point presentations on constructing traditional tests.

      Essential Question 3: IN WHAT WAYS MIGHT I MOTIVATE MY STUDENTS TO LEARN MORE AND DEEPER WHILE MAINTAINING APPROPRIATE BEHAVIOR IN MY CLASSES?

      [Be sure your "answer" addresses discipline and classroom management issues (teacher and school), effects of student choice in assignments and activities and voice in how the class is run and they are evaluated, Success/Achievement vs. Fear/Failure Orientations, and a variety of approaches.

      The following sites relate to this essential question.

      1. ARE STUDENTS CHANGING?

        Marshall McLuhan said, "We shape our tools; thereafter, our tools shape us." Have video and computer games, e-mail and cell phones, MTV and the Internet re-shaped student learning styles? The first two articles suggest such shaping has taken place, and the third gives examples of educational responses.

        1. DIGITAL LEARNING: Why Tomorrow's Schools Must Learn To Let Go of the Past

        2. *1*TWITCH SPEED: Reaching Younger Workers Who think Differently

        3. *1*School-To-Work Transition

        4. Simulations and Learning

        1. English Language Learners in Mainstream Classrooms - Sheltered Instruction: A major concept for working with English Language Learners. Use this with the next site that will allow any teacher or learner to get an instant Spanish traslation of any text, up to four pages at a time, or web site! Texts, or portions of texts can be scanned and translated, tests, etc.
        2. FreeTranslation.com -- Free translation of web sites and text for Spanish, French, and German to English and English to Spanish! AMAZING!! Another Translation site is Systran!
        3. LEARNING STRATEGIES** -- An important part of effective biliteracy and sheltered instructionstrategies

        4. Understanding *1*ADOLESCENT DEVELOPMENT is key to insight into what motivates teens.
        5. MOTIVATION and LEARNING, Chapter 1 of the book by this title; great explation of making intrinsic motivation work, although it goes against the grain of public schooling, as the Gatto articles explain.
        6. *1*Empowering Students: Essential Schools' Missing Link Key article for understanding how and why to make classroom learning more democratic--a key to the motivation/active learning problem.
        7. Student Motivation To Learn -- Good overall picture!
        8. *1*Personality and Differential Motivation in the Classroom -- Note the very enlightening Review of Literature section in this study. You'll also find key research on Success/Achievement vs. Fear/Failure Orientations.
        9. *1*****HOW TO DEVELOP STUDENT CREATIVITY -- Creativity is "at risk" during adolescence, and this site suggests ways teachers can see that their students realize this potential during one of the last periods it can be stimulated.
        10. Some Ideas for Motivating Students
        11. *****1*DISCIPLINE & CLASSROOM MANAGEMENT
        12. *1*Goal Setting and Learning -- Try teaching students to set goals and work on persistence; the results are awesome!
        13. HOMEWORK: Too Much of a Good Thing?
        14. NATIONAL SLEEP FOUNDATION ISSUES A WAKE UP CALL TO EDUCATORS: BE ALERT TO SLEEP NEEDS AND HABITS OF TEENS
        15. Essential Questions in Teaching and Learning -- Activating students' higher mental and emotional capacities to overcome "high stakes" testing's trivialization of learning.
        16. Questing the Web: Web Quests As Essential Questions -- A highly motivating class-wide inquiry strategy
        17. Personal "Energy Audit" -- Do this mini-workshop to sense how managing your energy level will aid both your and students' motivation.
        18. MOTIVATION IN THE CLASSROOM
        19. MOTIVATING SECONDARY STUDENTS TO LEARN
        20. MOTIVATING STUDENTS TO LEARN
        21. FUN BRAIN[Learning Games to Help with motivation]
        22. ERIC Digest: STUDENT MOTIVATION TO LEARN
          [Check out bibliography links to articles]
        23. MOTIVATING STUDENTS
        24. **ATTRIBUTION THEORY
        25. Take this CLASSROOM MANAGEMENT STYLE QUIZ
        26. CLASSROOM MANAGEMENT LINKS
        27. CLASSROOM MANAGEMENT
        28. **TEACHING for RESILIENCY shows positive, preventative and recovery appraches that are particularly promising. Reflect on some of these sites on the Discussion Board.
        29. My Hero: Teacher Heroes Inspiring!
        30. Give particular attention to the links in What Is the HEART?
        31. An Interview with Joseph Chilton Pearce is an eye-opening overview of pre-school factors that have a chilling effect on motivation. Reprint and carefully read with highlighting and annotating this article, noticing the effects of birthing practices and television watching in particular.
        32. INFORMAL EDUCATION -- Some students need education outside schools in order to prosper. In fact, we all do!

        Essential Question 4: IN WHAT WAYS MIGHT I ADAPT MY TEACHING FOR INCLUDED SPECIAL ED. STUDENTS (including GIFTED) AND THOSE FROM DIFFERENT CULTURAL AND LINGUISTIC BACKGROUNDS SO THEY CAN LEARN MORE AND DEEPER?

        [Be sure your "answer" addresses practices that will help all students, especially inclusion, differentiated instruction, multiple intelligence, and a variety of approaches.]

        The following sites will give you resources for developing your ideas and answersfor this essential question.

        1. *1*IN-SITES for INCLUSION
        2. ThinkQuest theAbleDisAbled
        3. Teaching English Language Learners
        4. Special Education and the Real Meaning of LD
        5. DIFFERENTIATED INSTRUCTION - Research shows a tremendous "undertow" in teaching toward "one size fits all" procedures of teachers working with the whole class. Strategies to help all students include learning logs and peer assisted learning.
        6. Double Entry Journals and Learning Logs
        7. Assessing Students with Interactive Collaborative Learning Logs
        8. Study Buddy - The "buddy system" applied to learning
        9. Insites for BILINGUAL EDUCATION
          "Brain Gym" and "One Brain" demonstrate the power of MOVEMENT activities to reverse learning disabilities.
        10. The Brain Gym Connection
        11. Brain Gym
        12. ONE BRAIN
        13. The Institute of Heartmath
        14. ADD/ADHD and Brain Gym
        15. Emotional I.Q. and Multiple Intelligences
        16. INCLUSION
        17. FAMILY VILLAGE SCHOOL
        18. INCLUSION HOME PAGE
        19. INCLUSION - Table of Contents
        20. ALL THE BEST ANSWERS FOR AT-RISK, TROUBLED, ADD, TRUANT YOUTH
        21. BASIC SKILLS
        22. DOCUMENTS ON DEPRESSION and SUICIDE
        23. BECOMING A BRILLIANT STAR
        24. CONTENT-SPECIFIC LEARNING STRATEGIES DATABASE
        25. MULTICULTURAL TEACHERS' CORNER
        26. PBS: The MULTICULTURAL CLASSROOM
        27. DIVERSITY IN AMERICA
        28. FACING HISTORY AND OURSELVES
        29. PBS RECOMMENDED WEB SITES ON RACE AND RACE RELATIONS
        30. RESOURCES for DIVERSITY


      ESSENTIAL QUESTION #5:

      IN WHAT WAYS MIGHT MY FRAMING and USING ESSENTIAL QUESTIONS HELP STUDENTS LEARN MORE AND DEEPER?

      This is an essential question on essential questioning! Sample as many as you can, and go in depth on those seeming most useful to construct a plan you describe in a long "fictional letter" to your students, telling them what, why, and how you will use essential questions. Include this "letter" in your portfolio.

      [Letter should elaborate ideas to include: Examples of Essential Questions and inquiry strategies in your content area, and the role you intend to play in helping them overcome resistance to taking more responsibility for their own learning.]

      EXAMPLES of TOPICS for ESSENTIAL QUESTIONS

      Topics that Generate Understanding

        In his 1992 book Smart Schools: From training memories to Educating Minds, David Perkins suggests reorganizing the curriculum around "generative topics" that provoke what he calls "understanding performances" which not only demonstrate a student's understanding but also advance it by encompassing new situations. With his Harvard University colleagues Howard Gardner and Vito Perrone, he devised several standards for such topics: they should be central to a subject matter or curriculum; they should be accessible and inviting to teachers and students, not "sparse or arcane" and they should be rich, encouraging extrapolation and connection making. The three researchers came up with the following "good bets" as examples.

        Natural Sciences

      • Evolution focusing on the mechanism of natural selection in biology and on its wide applicability to other settings like pop music, fashion, the evolution of ideas.
      • The origin and fate of the universe focusing qualitatively on cosmic questions as in Stephen Hawkings
      • a brief history of time the periodic table focusing on the dismaying number of elements identified by early investigators and the challenge of making order out of chaos.
      • The question what is real in science, pointing up how scientists are forever inventing entities(quarks, atoms, black holes) that we can never straightforwardly see but as evidence accumulates, come to think of as real.

        Social Studies

      • Nationalism and internationalism focusing on the causal role of nationalistic sentiment; often cultivation by leaders for their own purposes as in Hitler's Germany, in world history and in the prevailing foreign policy attitudes in America today.
      • Revolution and evolution asking whether cataclysmic revolutions are necessary or evolutionary mechanisms will serve.
      • Origins of government asking where, when and why different forms of government have emerged.
      • The question what is real in history, pointing up how events can look very different to different participants and interpretations.

        Mathematics

      • Zero, focusing on the problems of practical arithmetic that this great invention resolved.
      • Proof, focusing on different ways of establishing something as true and their advantages and disadvantages.
      • Probability and prediction, highlighting the ubiquitous need for simple probabilistic reasoning in every day life the question what is real in mathematics, emphasizing that mathematics is an invention and that many mathematical things initially were not considered real,(for instance, negative numbers, zero, and even the number one).

        Literature

      • Allegory and fable, juxtaposing classic and modern examples and asking whether the form has changed or remains essentially the same.
      • Biography and autobiography contrasting how these forms reveal and conceal the true person form and the liberation from form examining what authors have apparently gained from sometimes embracing and sometimes rejecting certain forms(the dramatic unities, the sonnet)
      • the question what is real in literature exploring the many senses of realism and how we can learn about real life from fiction.
        From David Perkins, Smart Schools: From Training Memories to Educating Minds(New York; Free Press, 1992)

        What Defines a Good Thinker?

        At the heart of good thinking, David Perkins suggests in his 1992 book Smart Schools, is the "thinking disposition" an inclination to learn that encompasses the abilities or "know-how" we want children to acquire. Good teachers model, cultivate, point out, and reward these dispositions, he says, in everything from classroom discussions to assessment activities. Perkins and his colleagues Eileen Jay and Shari Tishman offer the following model of the thinking dispositions.

        1. The disposition to be broad and adventurous
        2. The disposition toward sustained intellectual curiosity
        3. The disposition to clarify and seek understanding
        4. The disposition to be planful and strategic
        5. The disposition to be intellectually careful
        6. The disposition to seek and evaluate reasons
        7. The disposition to be metacognitive(to think about thinking and learning)

      1. Problem Based Learning -- With Web Quests, Sevice Learning, and other inquiry/essential question approaches
      2. QUESTING the WEB: Web Quests As Essential Questions -- Using Web Quests as an inquiry strategy involving whole classes in investigating Essential Questions.
      3. Asking the Essential Questions: Curriculum Development -- An Essential Schools working paper
      4. GENERATING ESSENTIAL QUESTIONS -- Teachers and students who generate essential questions about the content to be learned, provide an important framework for their learning activities.
      5. SOCRATIC SEMINARS -- Better than Socrates, and great for encouraging questioning habits of mind.
      6. Inquiry Based Learning -- Showing variety of sites and sources on essential question and problem based learning
      7. Empowering Students: Essential Schools' Missing Link -- Overcoming students' resistance to taking more responsibility for their learning.
      8. Student-Centered Discussion -- There's more to discussion than just talk.
      9. THE INVISIBLE SCHOOL -- Originators of the "Dialogue Game." Schools become invisible when they engage students with real-life problems. "The trouble with school is that it kept getting in the way of my education." --Mark Twain
      10. THE QUESTIONING TOOLKIT -- Extremely useful site!
      11. "PLANNING BACKWARDS FROM AN ESSENTIAL QUESTION"
      12. Building Communities Of Inquirers In Education- An article by Myriam Shechter.
      13. Building Our Stories Together- Discourses of classroom inquiry.
      14. Comparative Study of Structured and Inquiry Learning- A discussion by 3 practicing educators.
      15. Dialogic Inquiry in Education: Building on the legacy of Vygotsky- Vygotsky's theory of learning and development can integrate recent research; by conceptualizing the classroom as a Community of Inquiry, we can see how collaborative group work, dialogic knowledge building, and an inquiry-oriented curriculum are essential and interdependent components.
      16. Features of Inquiry Learning- Features specific Inquiry learning methods, exercises, and reflections on this mode of teaching.
      17. First Hand Learning, Inc.- Promotes inquiry teaching, learning from direct experience, and closer links between cultural institutions and schools.
      18. Foundations for Inquiry Book- A monograph for professionals in science, mathematics, and technology education.
      19. Inquiry in the Everyday World of Schools- A member of ENC's Science Advisory Board takes a closer look at the meaning of inquiry.
      20. Inquiring Minds Find New Challenges in Mathematics Competitions, Contests, & Events- A compilation of articles addressing inquiry in mathematics.
      21. Institute for Inquiry- Provides workshops, programs, on-line support, and an intellectual community of practice which afford science reform educators a deep and rich experience of how inquiry learning looks and feels.
      22. Learning Paths- Research and teacher's resources on learning and teaching styles, learning strategies, learner autonomy, metacognition, motivation, with particular reference to language learning but with ample opportunities for cross-curricular work.
      23. Learning Strategies Database Home Page- Computerized version of information on learning strategies compiled by personnel of the PLUS Program and Center for Advancement of Learning(CAL) at Muskingum College over a ten-year period. The strategies information derives from a number of sources, including books, professional journals, and presentations from professional meetings.
      24. Student Discourse in an Inquiry-Based Elementary Science Class- A community of university- and classroom-based researchers takes a close look at inquiry in a second grade science class.
      25. The Inquiry Page- A resource allowing educators to share curriculum units and reflections on those units.
      26. "What Have You Learned?": Co-Constructing the Meaning of Time- Journals as an inquiry tool.
      27. What I Learned in School- It's more broadly constructivist (on getting inside kids' heads) and less focused on inquiry per se.)
      28. Center for Inquiry- A school centered around inquiry.
      29. Classroom Resources for Inquiry and Problem Solving- A great article by Terese Herrera and Kimberly S. Roempler, ENC Instructional Resources.
      30. Educating as Inquiry: A Teacher / Action Research Site- Offers relevant research-based articles.
      31. Framing Essential Questions- A framework for developing essential questions for student research.
      32. If I Teach This Way, Am I Doing My Job?- An article by Debra Sprague and Christopher Dede.
      33. inQuiry Attic- Inquiry based-lessons.
      34. Iwonder: Inquiry-Based Learning and Teaching- Offers teaching tools, strategies, realities.
      35. Questioning Toolkit- A comprehensive set of strategies for asking essential questions; gives examples of the types of questions students can ask.
      36. Supporting a Study Programme- Using Repertory Grid interviewing, to measure the student's knowledge and direct the student to the priority areas for learning, to accompany the student in the enrichment of their understanding, giving instant feedback on the growth in their comprehension.
      37. Teaching Science- Great tips for new teachers.
      38. The Inquiry Page- A resource allowing educators to share curriculum units and reflections on those units.
      39. The Seattle Partnership for Inquiry-Based Science- Valerie Logan Hood reports on the Seattle Partnership for Inquiry-Based Science, a collaboration with scientists to bring hands-on inquiry-based science learning to students in Seattle's Public Schools.
      40. The Socratic Method- Teaching by asking instead of by telling.

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