Young people are the future. They will be the innovators and problem solvers. They will be responsible for decisions that we are yet to dream about. For this to occur, young people need to be creative, resilient, flexible, intuitive, adaptable and willing to learn new skills when the job demands it. With this in mind, an essential component of teaching and learning at Katandra School is to enhance the thinking skills of our students. Building the capacity of the students thinking abilities will be target by teachers, through implementing and providing a sequence of tools and strategies that can be used seamlessly through all aspects of the student’s education.
An explicit focus on thinking, and the teaching of thinking skills aims to develop students’ thinking to a qualitatively higher level. Students need to be supported to move beyond the lower order cognitive skills of recall and comprehension to the development of higher order processes required for creative problem solving, decision making and conceptualising. In addition, students need to develop metacognition- the capacity to reflect and manage their own thinking. This can only happen if the school and classroom culture values and promotes thinking and if students are provided with sufficient time to think, reflect and engage in sustained discussions, deliberation and inquiry. At Katandra we believe, students need challenging tasks that stimulate, encourage and support skilful and effective thinking.
At Katandra students work towards the achievement of standards in critical and creative thinking, they explore a wide variety of familiar contexts. With encouragement and support, they wonder, question and become adventurous in their thinking about these contexts. Students practise using all their observations which they learn to share and record.
Three combined processes determine success in early stages of building individuals capacity in thinking:
1. Input: obtaining, organising knowledge through sensory awareness and perception to confirm ‘What I know’.
2. Control: thinking through a situation and making actions meaningful, Eg-Planning, decision making and evaluating.
3. Output: Strategies for using knowledge and solving problems that combine ‘What I do’ with ‘What I Know’ Eg- remembering, thinking about and generating new ideas.
Through the use of a range of simple thinking tools to gather and process information, Students progress in understanding that reflective thinking is a deliberate process, affected by emotions and motivations, and that it is used to develop and refine ideas and beliefs, furthermore to explore different and new perceptions.
Intentions & Performance Guidelines
The learning intentions and student performance guide lines that underpin the framework of developing student’s capacity in working towards Victorian Curriculum outcomes for ‘Critical and Creative Thinking’ are that students understand the following:
• Those decisions about right or wrong choices are based on the agreed set of ethical principles.
• How to think about, describe and improve their own thinking and learning.
• That dialogue is essential in developing fair-minded positions.
• In what ways experiences, emotions, beliefs and cultural perspectives affect thinking and create differences between self and others.
• The importance of being open to new possibilities and perceptions, pertaining the ideas of self and others.