This summer, I participated in a professional learning experience with LUTE-STEM at Lehman College I learned a lot about different frameworks of learning which promote computational thinking, The habits of mind, descriptive review of a child, and multimodal teaching concepts.
There was a lot to think about and to consider how to apply in the classroom, and in this letter, I’d like to focus on how to create a new format which includes a multimodal approach while developing a sense of what the habits of mind offers and how it’s importance in child development because I personally didn’t know that controlling abrupt responses, and impulsive behavior, as well as learning how to think before reacting are skills needed as children grow.
I would like to propose that we create a unit using the habits of mind that students may feel in need to reinforce. I think we can make a group discussion where we share our weakness and strengths. This unit should start with a preview about the habits of mind and how important it is to learn how to manage our impulses. The teacher can provide visuals, videos and even find an expert who’s willing to meet with the class via zoom to discuss the topic.
To do this we will need newspaper, magazines, pictures, and recyclable items. Also glue, poster board, markers etc. to make a collage. Students will create a collage with pictures and item that can easily trigger their emotions on a negative way. They will be presenting their project in class and explaining the skills they feel they need to work on in order to control their impulses.
The students will be making a collage that can best represent the habits of mind they need to reinforce. They will individually be creating an art piece that can best explain their reaction when predispose to situations that they are not yet ready to face.
When the students complete this activity, they will have made progress on these two standards from the New York State Social Studies Framework, and the New York State Standard for the Arts.
- A. Gathering, Interpreting, and Using Evidence
3. analyze evidence in terms of content, authorship, point of view, bias, purpose, format, and audience.
5. make inferences and draw conclusions from evidence.
- A: Cr3.1.7
a. Reflect on and explain important information about personal artwork, in an artist statement or in another forma
Here’s how I think we might introduce this activity. We could give these directions to the students: the teacher will ask then to write a short paragraph about the situations they feel they are not yet ready to confront. What situations make you feel vulnerable and for which you may not always have the answers. Students will have 15 mins to do this activity individually and later will be assigned to a classmate to exchange thoughts. I would also propose that the students give each other feedback on their work. They could use this checklist to self-assess and to give each other feedback:
- I can respond to familiar topics.
- I can respond positively if the other person knows how to approach.
- I can think before reacting if the situation is favorable.
This activity should take at least 25 mins to complete, which should allow time for productive struggle. To encourage persistence, I think we might share our letter to see if anyone else can relate to others triggers. If it’s the case, how can we work on controlling our impulses? Students will exchange ideas and suggestions about how they manage their emotions.
When they have finished this activity, it would be great if we could ask the students to write and talk about how they used one of these three Habits of Mind.
- Managing Impulsivity
- Listening with Understanding and Empathy
- Thinking about your thinking.
I will also use these Habits of Mind to give the students both written and oral feedback while they are working and once the finish their work.
Thank you for taking the time to consider this proposal. I hope you see how valuable this activity could be for our students. Please let me know if you have any revisions that I might consider for this activity. I look forward to working with you on this