Peel the Fruit

I have been looking for a good way to structure my unit of inquiry board. I’ve noticed that over the course of the unit, we discover and create all kinds of useful artefacts: charts, lists, maps, questions. Without a structured way of organizing all that information and knowledge, my unit boards (and usually the surrounding walls) […]

CSI: Colour, Symbol, Image

CSI is one of the more challenging  Visible Thinking Routines but it can really help students develop their understanding of a topic. The basic format is like this: Think 
of 
the 
big 
ideas 
and 
important 
themes 
in 
what
 you 
have 
just 
read, 
seen, or 
heard. Choose
 a
 COLOUR 
that
 you 
think 
best 
represents 
the 
essence 
of […]

Here are the posters I use to illustrate the PYP Key Concepts visually. The text is taken from the IB PYP’s Making it Happen. If you use these posters, please add a comment below. I’m curious if I’ve been able to help other teachers. Also, if you have any suggestions, please tell me. PYP Key Concepts […]

Question Sort vs. PYP Key Concepts

Good inquiry requires good questions. For several years I have explicitly taught my students how to ask good questions. Over time, my understanding of the art of questioning has changed, as I continue to learn how to help students create powerful and interesting research questions. As I see it, my understanding has had three stages […]

Circle of Viewpoints

I have made a simple graphic organiser to helps students follow the Circle of Viewpoints thinking routine. I find this routine an accessible way for students to see a topic or issue from different points of view. Sometimes, I use this routine first, and then add on to it with “Step Inside“. Copied directly from […]

Three Stars and a Wish

The advantage of this assessment tool is the ratio of positive to negative comments helps mitigate hurt feelings. Three Stars: good things, positives, successes One Wish: one thing you wish was different, suggestion for next time, area of improvement I always introduce the routine with a discussion of what makes a useful star and wish. […]

PMI: Plus, Minus, Interesting

This is a quick and easy to learn routine for helping students reflect on advantages and disadvantages of a topic, decision, or experience. I use it with my students when I want them to make a considered assessment, rather than just a superficial off-the-cuff statement. PMI stands for: P: “plus”, good things, advantages, positives M: “minus”, bad […]

Discussion Operations Cards

We conduct a lot of group discussions in my class. Often the format starts with an engaging question or challenge to start their curiosity, then moves on to a discussion using a routine like Think-Pair-Share. I noticed that many of my students were using some of the same behaviours: acknowledging a previous comment, and adding one’s own […]

A couple years ago I made this set of Six Thinking Hats posters to use with my Grade Four students. I combined several useful Six Thinking Hats resources into one A4 sized poster per hat. In addition to De Bono’s book, I primarily relied on a list of questions and sentence stems related to each hat (including […]