Chat with us, powered by LiveChat Reading Reflection: After reading the required material for this module, type a reflection ?that include the following: Analyze HOM used: Start your reflection addressing a habit(s) - EssayAbode

Reading Reflection: After reading the required material for this module, type a reflection ?that include the following: Analyze HOM used: Start your reflection addressing a habit(s)

 Reading Reflection: After reading the required material for this module, type a reflection  that include the following:

  1. Analyze HOM used: Start your reflection addressing a habit(s) of mind (HOM) that you used to understand the topic and analyze how and why did you use that HOM. Use the “How are we doing” checklist (Download “How are we doing” checklist (Word) to support your reflection.
  2. Question: Post one question for the discussion about each chapter. These questions should require interpretation of the ideas laid out in the chapter and should reflect your careful reading and thinking about its content.  You do not need to provide answers to these questions. The quality of your questions will be considered as part of the assignment grade using Arthur Costa's quinksto an external site.. Make sure to include the level of questioning next to each question. 

The criteria for your grade will be:

  1. Reading reflection (not summary or bullets) (1 point)
  2. Analyze HOM used (2 points)
  3. Questioning level based on Arthur Costa (2 points)

Reading: Ritchhart, et al.  MTV  3 pages 45-52 Making Thinking Visible: How to promote engagement, understanding, and independence for all learnersRitchart, R. Church, M., Morrison, K.San Francisco Jossey- Bass Publishers. 2011ISBN-10 047091551XISBN-13 978-0470915516  Chapter 8

Shifting Teachers’ Discourse


Shifting Teachers’ Discourse in the Classroom:

Implications of Cultivating Habits of Mind, Visible Thinking, and Teaching for

Understanding in a Graduate Childhood Curriculum Course

Angela K. Salmon, Ed.D.

Florida International University

Debra Mayes Pane, Ph.D.

Florida International University

Shifting Teachers’ Discourse


Shifting Teachers’ Discourse in the Classroom:

Implications of Cultivating Habits of Mind, Visible Thinking, and Teaching for

Understanding in a Graduate Childhood Curriculum Course

It is common for teachers to teach in the same way that they were taught. In their teacher

discourse, teachers often communicate and reflect their philosophies of teaching and learning,

teaching approaches, and habits of mind. This chapter presents our approach of embedding and

consolidating the Habits of Mind (HoM) and using the Visible Thinking (VT) approach to

develop thinking dispositions within a Teaching for Understanding (TfU) framework (Blyte &

Associates, 1998) in a graduate course (Childhood Curriculum, EDE 6205) in the College of

Education (COE) at Florida International University (FIU) which is designed for candidates to

study curriculum theory, research, construction, and evaluation. The combination of approaches

have been designed and applied to enhance thinking and understanding of teachers/master’s

degree candidates’ enrolled in the MS Curriculum and Instruction – Jamaican program.

Additionally, we designed a qualitative case study of course participants to explore the three

important interrelated frameworks [HoM-VT- TfU] for developing dialogical and dialectical

thinking through teachers’ discourse (Flyvbjerg, 2011). The study took place in in several

regions of Jamaica during the summer term, 2012. The study included the candidates’ field

notes and audio/videotaping of their lessons taught at early childhood, elementary, middle, and

high school levels in very diverse learning settings in grades pK-12 schools. We triangulated the

data from different candidates’ artifacts that revealed how the three frameworks of EDE 6205

Shifting Teachers’ Discourse


were a call to action in their current practices to reflect on their classroom discourse, and that the

new ideas/approaches would have favorable implications in their students’ learning outcomes.

Childhood Curriculum Course EDE 6205

Thinking is a critical component in the learning process. Learning is a consequence of

thinking (Perkins, 1992); thus, we believe that it is important for teachers to interpret the concept

of thinking and how it is reflected in their discourse in the classroom. EDE 6205 was designed

with this end-goal in mind.

Our Philosophy: Setting the Stage for Dialogical and Dialectical Thinking

Paul (2001) distinguishes between two theories that reveal the teacher’s discourse in the

classroom: (a) the didactic teaching theory and (b) the dialogical and dialectical thinking theory.

We differentiate between these two theories to illustrate how the performances of understanding

for this course were planned with the end-goal in mind of helping teachers reflect on their initial

didactic teaching and their shift to a dialogical and dialectical thinking and teaching practices.

The didactic teaching theory is a teacher-centered approach that encourages the teacher’s

monologic thinking from beginning to end. Didactic instruction is teaching by telling (The

Critical Thinking Community, 2012). Teachers provide students with explicit knowledge to

memorize, and the teachers expect students to regurgitate the same knowledge back to them. In

the didactic teachingapproach, students’ knowledge is separate from understanding and

justification. In other words, didactic teaching assumes that teachers can give students

knowledge directly without their having to think their way through it. (See Appendix A, EDE

6205 Stories from the Authors’ Personal Experiences concerning didactic teaching theory and


Shifting Teachers’ Discourse


On the other hand, the dialogical and dialectical thinking theory involves dialogue or

extended exchange between different points of view or frames of reference. Teachers

purposefully create a classroom culture of thinking, talking, and collaborative learning. Within

this perspective, teachers show students how to use their own thinking to figure out the thinking

of another as they listen carefully to the thoughts of another and try to make sense of those

thoughts. For Dottin (2010), the effort of teacher education programs is to help candidates move,

like children, past impulse to the more intelligent level of pedagogical conduct, that is, to grow in

professional judgment (p 8). When students arrange their thoughts, orally or in writing, they are

reasoning dialogically (Paul, 2001). In the next sections, we explore how to engage

teachers/master’s degree candidates in dialogical and dialectical thinking through the a process

that ultimately aims for exposure to the Habits of Mind (HoM), the Visible Thinking (VT), and

Teaching for Understanding (TfU) frameworks. The following passages represent the

foundational aspects of the three frameworks.

Habits of Mind: Dispositions Toward Behaving Intellectually

The Habits of Mind (HoM) are performed in response to people’s questions and

problematic situations (Costa & Kallick, 2009). HoM are defined as dispositions toward

behaving intelligently when confronted with problems—the answers to which are not

immediately known. Costa and Kallick (2009) propose sixteen HoM, such as persisting,

managing impulsivity, listening with understanding and empathy, and thinking flexibly, among

others. The HoM can enrich different curriculum models. We use Costa and Kallick’s (2008)

four levels of educational outcomes framework (see Figure 1.1) as a foundation to justify our

interpretation of the HoM within the particular learning community in this study.

Shifting Teachers’ Discourse


Figure 1.1: Four levels of educational outcomes.

Reprinted with permission from ASCD.

The HoM require a composite of many skills, attitude cues, past experiences, and

proclivities. Internalizing the HoM means that we do not value one pattern of thinking over

another, which implies we make choices about which pattern should be employed at the time.

Visible Thinking (VT): Cognitive Tasks That Demand Skillful Thinking

Our interpretation of the cognitive tasks that demand skillful thinking draws from our

experience with the VT approach and the TfU framework. Both approaches are compatible with

Costa and Kallick’s (2008) idea of providing students with sufficiently authentic, engaging, and

challenging curricula, instead of merely reproducing knowledge. The VT approach, developed

by Project Zero researchers (Ritchhart & Perkins, 2008), is a broad and flexible framework for

enriching classroom learning in the content areas while fostering students’ intellectual

development. The key goals of VT are to (a) deepen learners’ understanding of content, (b)

increase motivation for learning, (c) develop learners’ thinking and learning abilities, (d) develop

learners’ attitudes toward thinking and learning, (e) develop learners’ alertness to opportunities

for thinking and learning—the dispositional side of thinking, and (f) shift the classroom culture

Shifting Teachers’ Discourse


toward a community of enthusiastically engaged thinkers and learners. Within this framework,

an understanding of the eight cultural forces that Ritchhart (2002) proposes leads us to appreciate

how teachers can create cultures of thinking in their classrooms.

Cultural Forces. Tishman, Perkins and Jay (1995) claim that schools are places of

culture not only in the sense of intellectual achievements, but also the sense of community and

spirit of common enterprise. A culture of thinking exists in a classroom when the cultural forces

of that classroom are directed toward, and aligned with, the support of good thinking (Ritchhart,

2002). The use of Thinking Routines (TRs) uncovers children’s thinking and provokes

collective thinking, or dialogical and dialectical thinking. Dialogical and dialectical thinking

involve dialogue or extended exchange between different points of view or frames of reference

(Paul, 2001). The interplay between nature and nurture plays a critical role in promoting

children’s cognitive development. We do not teach children to talk, but we provide them with

opportunities to engage them in talking. As Vygotsky (1978) pointed out—children grow into

the intellectual life of those around them. Children are born with genetic codes that influence

their cognitive development, however, we need to nurture their thinking. We can see these

opportunities reflected in Ritchhart’s (2002) eight cultural forces:

 Time for thinking, allocating time for exploring topics in depth

 Expectations for thinking and learning, setting the agenda of understanding and value for


 Opportunities for engaging in thinking, providing purposeful activities that require

students’ cognitive engagement and understanding

 Routines which are structures that scaffold thinking and learning

 Language and conversations centered on thinking products and stances

Shifting Teachers’ Discourse


 Modeling who we are as thinkers

 Interactions and relationships that show respect for students’ contributions

 Physical environments where we make thinking visible by displaying the students’

process of thinking

As we reviewed the literature, we noticed strong connections between the eight cultural

forces and the HoM. We see the HoM as precursors for designing curriculum that cognitively

engage students and help them understand concepts. We also considered that the internalizations

of these frameworks were critical to shift teachers’ discourse in the classroom. Furthermore, the

social environment plays a critical role in shaping dispositions of intelligent conduct (Dottin,

2010). Project Zero researchers designed a variety of thinking routines (Ritchhart, Church, &

Morrison, 2011). The next passage addresses the origins of the thinking routines and connections

with the HoM.

Thinking Routines (TRs). The research-based TRs were developed by Project Zero

researchers at Harvard Graduate School of Education (Ritchhart, Church, & Morrison 2011).

Routines exist in all classrooms. A routine can be thought of as any procedure, process, or

pattern of action that is used repeatedly to manage and facilitate the accomplishment of specific

goals or tasks. Classrooms have routines that serve to manage student behavior and interactions,

to organize the work of learning, and to establish rules for communication and discourse.

Classrooms also have routines that structure the way students go about the process of learning.

VT makes extensive use of learning routines that are thinking rich. These routines are simple

structures—for example, a set of questions or a short sequence of steps that can be used across

various grade levels and content. What makes them routines, versus mere strategies, is that they

get used over and over again in the classroom so that they become part of the fabric of classroom

Shifting Teachers’ Discourse


culture. The routines become the ways in which students go about the process of learning

(Visible Thinking, 2012). In other words, teaching thinking is an enculturation approach.

According to Tishman, Perkins & Jay (1995) enculturation involves a model, explanation,

interaction and feedback. By using thinking routines the student becomes aware of the language

of thinking or mental process. Words of thinking describe and evoke thinking. This is important

because the process helps students organize and communicate their own thinking more precisely

and intelligently, while it reinforces standards for thinking (Tishman, Perkins & Jay, 1995). The

teachers/master’s degree candidates and authors selected the most popular TRs to analyze in

connection with the HOM. In Appendix B, we share our interpretation of the close relationship

between TRs and the HoM.

Teaching for Understanding: Thinking Skills and Content

An important quality in children is the ability to use what they know in new and

unfamiliar contexts by demonstrating their understanding flexibly as they respond to the moving

target of tomorrow. For Perkins (2001), understanding something is a matter of being able to

think and act flexibly with what you know and are coming to know (p. 446). Traditional

education has been about educating for the known. Here, educators’ attention is being called to

the fact that we are educating for the unknown. In other words, “good learning is learning from a

richly experienced today with tomorrow in view” (p. 218). It is worth mentioning that we do not

know what is going to happen in 5, 10, or 20 years from now.

Content. Curriculum designers work under the influences of different forces that are

mandated by the administration, state requirements, and so forth. However, practitioners should

always keep in mind a critical question: What is worth learning? During the early nineties,

Project Zero researchers developed the Teaching for Understanding (TfU) approach (Perkins,

Shifting Teachers’ Discourse


2001), which encompasses four cornerstones of pedagogy with four elements of planning and

instruction. The TfU is an educational pedagogy that uses the following four questions as a

foundation for its framework (Blyte and Associates, 1998):

1. What topics are worth understanding? (Generative Topic).

2. What about these topics needs to be understood? (Understanding Goals).

3. How can we foster understanding? (Performances of Understanding).

4. How can we tell what students understand? (Ongoing Assessment).

Thinking Skills. It is important for educators to help students become aware of the

thinking skills that they are using to perform an activity, solve problems, and so on (Salmon &

Lucas, 2011). Learning is a consequence of thinking (Perkins, 1992). Thus, educators can foster

learning when they use a language of thinking that directs students’ attention to a particular

thinking skill to solve a problem. For example, instead of saying, “Let’s look at these two

pictures,” a mindful language would be, “Let’s compare these two pictures” (Costa & Kallick,

2008). The intentional use of terminology creates students’ thinking dispositions. Good

thinking is not only a matter of skills, but also a matter of dispositions (Ritchhart & Perkins,


The 21st century calls students to become nimble learners who are trained to flex and

stretch their thinking skills (Perkins, 2009). When children are aware of the thinking skills that

help them understand concepts, they become independent learners. When talking about thinking

skills, many people refer to Bloom’s Taxonomy. Bloom’s Taxonomy is a theory and is not

based on research about learning (Ritchhart, Church, & Morrison, 2011). However, the

taxonomy has become codified into how many teachers are taught to think about thinking.

Ritchhart and colleagues (2011) disagree with the fact that Bloom’s Taxonomy has a sequential

Shifting Teachers’ Discourse


or hierarchical way of seeing thinking that takes place at different levels. In contrast, they

suggest that rather than concerning ourselves with levels among different types of thinking, it is

better to focus our attention on the levels or quality within a single type of thinking.

Problem Statement and Research Questions

When we observe a teacher in her classroom, in many contexts, the stories she is telling

to students reflect the teacher’s philosophy of teaching and learning. Teachers set the culture of

their classrooms based on their values and beliefs about teaching and learning. The patterns of

discourse reflect both the teacher’s expectations about her students and determine the culture that

the teacher is creating. Cultures of thinking are places in which a group’s collective, as well as

an individual’s thinking is valued, visible, and actively promoted as part of the regular, day-to-

day experience of all group members (Ritchhart, 2002). As with language, adults are responsible

for nurturing children’s thinking. There is a consensus among some scholars (Costa, 2001;

Fogarty, 2001; Perkins, 2001) that thinking is teachable and learnable, and teachers play a

critical role in making this happen. Ritchhart, Turner, and Hadar (2009) suggest that when

teachers engage children in cognitive activities to uncover their thinking, they capture those

critical moments when thinking is taking place. This allows teachers to get a hold of it and

engage children cognitively in deep thinking and understanding.

The profile of the 21st century citizen requires thoughtful people who are curious,

creative, collaborative, communicators and critical thinkers (National Council for Teachers of

English, 2012). Twenty-first century skills prepare citizens not only to be successful problem

solvers, but also to be problem finders,and such skills are developed through the dialogical and

dialectical thinking experiences. Thus, today’s teachers need opportunities to learn how to

implement the dialogical and dialectical thinking theory and associated approaches into their

Shifting Teachers’ Discourse


teaching, learning, and discourse practices. One of the purposes of EDE 6205 was to help

teachers/master’s degree candidates’ (graduate practitioners) gain ownership about building

cultures of thinking in their own classroom. Our study explored whether or not there were any

changes in the participants’ discourse in their classrooms as a result of their self-reflection and

discourse awareness, and if there were any implications for grades pK-12 children’s thinking and

learning. The research questions for this study were:

What are the implications of teachers’ interpretation and value of thinking reflected in

their philosophy and discourse in the classroom?

How do teachers’ reflect about changes that happen as a result of being exposed to the

HoM, VT and TfU frameworks for thinking and learning?


The qualitative case study explored the EDE 6205 candidate’s implementation of three

important interrelated frameworks—Habits of Mind, Visible Thinking, and Teaching for

Understanding thinking frameworks—for developing dialogical and dialectical thinking through

teachers’ discourse in pK-12 classrooms in Jamaica (Flyvbjerg, 2011). The case study sought to

understand and exemplify a case study of individuals, who were participating in the same

graduate level course and program during summer, 2012. The case study was constructed

through narrative inquiry, a subtype of qualitative inquiry that [centers] around an interest in life

experiences as [narrated] by those who live them” (Chase, 2011, p. 421), using storytelling,

narrative practices, and content/discourse analysis (Rex, 2006; Rex & Schiller, 2009). This

interpretive case study is framed within the social constructivist paradigm (Denzin & Lincoln,

2011) in which “everyday realities are actively constructed in and through forms of social

action” (Holstein & Gubrium, 2011, p. 341).

Shifting Teachers’ Discourse



Participants were “selected on the basis of expectations about their information content”

(Flyvbjerg, 2011, p. 307) and with informed consent. A cohort of Jamaican graduate student-

practitioners serving pK-12 grade levels, who participated in the Master’s in Curriculum &

Instruction program at FIU in Jamaica, were selected to analyze their respective journeys toward

becoming more thoughtful “thinking” practitioners. The cohort of degree candidates was a

convenient sample, who worked in diverse educational settings, including early childhood,

elementary, middle school, high school, vocational, counseling, and so forth (see Table 1.0).

Table 1.0 EDE 6205 Participant Demographic Data: Teaching Level, Education Level,

Gender, & Age







Gender Age























All 16 participants were female and had bachelors’ degrees. Seven taught at primary or middle

school levels, while nine taught at the high school level. Three participants’ ages were in their

20s, ten were in their 30s, and three were in their 40s or 50s.

Curriculum and Instruction

The EDE 6205 curriculum and instruction were designed to engage candidates (who are

practitioners at the same time) in self-reflection about their current teaching philosophy and

Shifting Teachers’ Discourse


practice. Also, the course was designed to engage the participants in awareness, valuing, and

self-reflection of shifts in their teachers’ discourse. Shifts in teachers’ discourse included teacher

practices that cognitively engaged their students after experiencing the power of HoM, VT, and

TfU ideas in their own learning. Decisions for the course design with these end-goals in mind

included: planning for teachers/master’s degree candidates’ learning outcomes, understanding

goals, and performances of understanding.

Learning Outcomes

Candidates’ learning outcomes followed the FIU COE Conceptual Framework (CF) as


 Stewards of the Discipline (knowledge)—having the necessary concepts, knowledge and

understandings in their respective field of study.

 Reflective Inquirers (skills)—knowing how to use the requisite generic skills needed to

apply the content and pedagogical.

 Mindful Educators (Dispositions)—being able to apply the dispositions, that is, habits of

mind (intellectual and social) that render professional actions and conduct more


Based on the CF, EDE 6205 included the following understanding goals and performances of


Understanding Goals

Specific understanding goals for this course include the following:

Knowledge. Understand and appreciate various approaches and philosophies used

in curriculum development and decision making. Understand theories of child

development and principles of learning. Understand how to create, design, and improve a

Shifting Teachers’ Discourse


course outline, unit and lesson plans to promote thinking and learning.

Skills. Develop the skills required to create, design, and improve a course outline,

unit and lesson plans to promote thinking and learning. Develop effective teaching

methods to design appropriate creative learning experiences for children including ESOL,

ESE and LEP, and culturally diverse backgrounds.

Dispositions. Disposed to understand, broaden, expand, and improve their

knowledge of curriculum development and theory both locally and within the

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