This was followed by a discussion of “21st Century Skills” and just how vague the 6cs (Character Education, Citizenship, Communication, Critical Thinking and Problem-Solving, Collaboration, Creativity and Imagination) are.
Next we were asked to think about what we would be teaching in the next few months and to keep those curriculum goals in mind as we explored Integrative Thinking.
Finally we set our goal for the day.
The rest of the day was spent learning about Integrative Thinking by using the tools of Integrative Thinking to find solutions to a complex problem. It was broken down into steps.
|Identifying what we value and why we value elements of conflicting models.|
The day ended with a quick introduction to the ithink hwdsb site which at the moment is only open to participants. There teachers can share, ask questions and upload pictures and videos of how they develop Integrative Thinking in their programs. This will hopefully include successes and flops so that we can learn what works, what doesn’t and help each other refine how Integrative Thinking fits in our classrooms. This is meant to be a collaborative process .
Teachers now have one month to think about and experiment with Integrative Thinking before the next day of training. There will be informal face to face meetings in between training days for teachers to share, ask questions and get help. Our first will take place on Feb 4.
One final note, on Wednesday at The Inquiry Working Group meeting, a few teachers who had been at the Rotman training day had begun experimenting with Integrative Thinking. One shared how using Causal Models had immediately changed the dynamic in the classroom and the level of engagement and thinking of her students. That brought me a sense of joy and confirmation that what happened in my classroom last year wasn’t just an isolated event. The HWDSB West Cluster Integrative Thinking Initiative is going to improve how students think and solve problems.