Fostering Student Engagement and Learning: A Brief Look at Making Thinking Visible

culture-of-wonderMaking Thinking Visible is a research-based approach to teaching thinking that was developed at Harvard’s Project Zero Classroom. Instead of lecturing the students and then asking for the answer to a question, the teacher is a facilitator for the students themselves to be the questioners. This approach, and the corresponding thinking routines, may seem commonsensical, but they go against decades of traditions in classrooms.

As T.H. Rogers Assistant Principal Christian Winn says, “Making Thinking Visible challenges us as educators to move from thinking about learning to using thinking to learn. From us thinking about a concept or question or idea, to thinking with a concept or question or idea. And there is where the real learning happens with our students.”

Through spoken or written word or visual paintings, students share their learning, cultivate their own moods of wonder, and learn in the process.