1) “Whoever does the most work does the most learning.” Debbie Miller. My thoughts: make sure students do most the work! Duh.
2) “The great thing about technology is that it enables us to connect not 1-1 but 1-world.” Stephanie Harvey. My thoughts: the “ether” allows for an authentic audience, “publishing” and collaboration for real interacting with the world and other like-minded students. However, be aware of the perils of “together alone” → why digital citizenship is important.
3) “Work doesn’t have to be “finished” to be published” (but do acknowledge that it is a draft) Debbie Miller. My thoughts: allows for more authentic bulletin boards that are more reflective of the student thought/work process as opposed to pretty displays.
4) “Thinking sheets are like reading gym for the mind and are highly linked to student achievement.” Stephanie Harvey. My thoughts: because they allow a child to process, and this thinking is what we should really be after.
5) “Passion and wonder are contagious.” Debbie Miller. My thoughts: let students ask questions, even if it feels uncomfortable and make the classroom a fun place to be.
6) “Inquiry based learning is about living in a way that kid’s questions matter, not about the final product at the end.” Debbie Miller. My thoughts: process over outcome for sure, sometimes easier said than done though and also important to remember to document the process for later reflection.
7) “A question will get addressed, but not necessarily answered.” Stephanie Harvey. My thoughts: again, all about the process. If a question has a quick and easy answer it was probably the “wrong” question to start with, and it’s ok not to have all the answers, the end result or the “answer” isn’t what matters most.
8) “Instantaneous access really changes your life.” Eric Schmidt from Google. My thoughts: if all the answers you need are only one search and a click away what matters most – content or asking the right questions and making sense of the information?
9) “The more you know the more you wonder.” Debbie Miller. My thoughts: that is the way it should be but in my mind it is unfortunately an inverse correlation, meaning that all too often the older kids get the less questions they ask. Why is that? Make sure to keep that curiosity alive in your classroom!
10) “Thinking stems matter … ” Alex Lancia =) They frame our reading/writing/conversation and make us more cognizant of being critical thinkers and the purpose behind what we are doing – both as teachers and students. So here is a thinking stem for you dear reader. Think about what the implications are for your practice in your classroom. Why does this matter?
Thank you Stephanie Harvey and Debbie Miller for sharing and thank you to Munich International School for hosting – what a great campus! (October 2015)