Matching Items (18)

Implementing Critical Thinking Skills into Fourth Grade Social Science Curriculum

Description

During the 2020-2021 school year, Arizona teachers will be expected to implement a new set of Social Science Standards into their curriculum. The Arizona Department of Education (ADE) issued an

During the 2020-2021 school year, Arizona teachers will be expected to implement a new set of Social Science Standards into their curriculum. The Arizona Department of Education (ADE) issued an implementation guide for these new standards that began in 2017. The upcoming 2020-2021 year will be the first year that these standards will be fully utilized in the classroom. To assist first year teachers and teachers that are struggling with the new changes, an eight-lesson work book was created. These lessons are in alignment with the updated Arizona standards, as well as the four main critical thinking skills, problem solving, questioning, evaluating sources, and decision making. These lessons were created with the Problem Based Learning style in mind and are formatted in a “5E” lesson template. The workbook features a four-lesson unit on Natural Disasters. The entire lesson is STEM based, utilizes different English Language Arts techniques, and provides interactive components. The second half of the workbook features four lessons that start a unit on Native Americans. This curriculum was created based on lesson templates provided by the Chandler Unified School District and were created to aid first year teachers, as well as teachers that need assistance with the transition to new standards.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2020-05

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Surveying Arizona's third through fifth grade teachers about their confidence in teaching the cognitive demands of the Common Core State Standards to all students

Description

ABSTRACT

The purpose of this descriptive study was to gain an understanding of the confidence level held by third, fourth, and fifth grade teachers as to their preparedness for teaching the

ABSTRACT

The purpose of this descriptive study was to gain an understanding of the confidence level held by third, fourth, and fifth grade teachers as to their preparedness for teaching the cognitive demands of the Common Core State Standards (Arizona's College and Career Ready Standards) to all students, in particular Hispanic students living in poverty, who occupy close to a third of all classroom seats in Arizona. The achievement gap between Hispanic students living in poverty and non-Hispanic students of non-poverty status is one of the largest achievement gaps in Arizona, which has existed with minimal change for more than 12 years. By gaining an understanding of the teachers' confidence in teaching critical thinking skills, further support and professional development is suggested to link a teacher's knowledge to instructional practice that in turn increases the academic achievement of Arizona's poor Hispanic students.

The process of gaining this understanding was by using a multi-dimensional survey with 500 third through fifth grade teachers in two uniquely different, but representative, Arizona school districts. Approximately one-third of those teachers responded to the multi-dimensional survey about teaching the critical thinking (CT) skills of Arizona's College and Career Ready Standards for English Language Arts. The survey asked teachers to rate their levels of preparedness for teaching CT to several types of students, to choose a CT definition, describe the relationship of CT and reading, explain how they teach CT to students who are reading below grade level, express the support they need to teach CT to those students, and rate the effectiveness of several CT classroom vignettes for different types of students. Although the questions involved several types of students, the primary focus was on exploring the teachers' position with teaching CT to Low SES Hispanic students.

A disconnect was revealed between the teachers' perception that they had the ability and knowledge necessary to teach critical thinking skills and their ability to identify ineffective critical thinking instructional practices. This disconnect may be interfering with the link between the professional development teachers are currently receiving to implement Common Core State Standards and teachers actively engaging in learning what is needed to effectively teach critical thinking skills to their students.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2014

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A Study on Brazilian Secondary Teachers in a Community of Practice Focused on Critical Thinking

Description

The purpose of this action research was to work with Brazilian trained educators in a Community of Practice (CoP) to explore how teachers collectively define and talk about critical thinking

The purpose of this action research was to work with Brazilian trained educators in a Community of Practice (CoP) to explore how teachers collectively define and talk about critical thinking (CT). The research also examined how past teaching experiences shaped their attitudes toward emphasizing CT in teaching. In addition, the research studied how participation in a CoP focused on CT changed classroom planning. The study is grounded in Community of Practice and Social Constructivism. As an international school, this study examined related research conducted in Jordan, Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Pakistan. This qualitative action research was 12 weeks in length with six participants who were all from Brazil and worked at a private bilingual international secondary school. Participants completed an initial interview and final interview. They also completed online journals, which were assembled weekly for 45 minutes, and maximized their efforts constructing a unit plan utilizing the Understanding by Design method. The results of the study describe the teachers’ definition of critical thinking, and also present an understanding of how the CoP shaped their attitudes. This, in turn, resulted in members’ updated classroom planning, which was due to participation in the cohort. Further issues and credibility, contextualization, and transferability as well as researcher positionality were discussed.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2019

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Implementing differentiated instruction by building on multiple ways all students learn

Description

This action research addressed teacher effectiveness in supporting students’ critical thinking skills by implementing differentiated instructional strategies in eight 3rd- and 4th-grade, self-contained, inclusive classrooms. This study addressed how third-

This action research addressed teacher effectiveness in supporting students’ critical thinking skills by implementing differentiated instructional strategies in eight 3rd- and 4th-grade, self-contained, inclusive classrooms. This study addressed how third- and fourth-grade teachers perceived their instructional effectiveness, how differentiated instructional strategies influence third- and fourth-grade teachers, and how third- and fourth-grade teachers make further use of differentiated instruction to support students’ critical thinking skills across cultures, linguistics, and achievement levels to increase student achievement. Out of the enrollment in a southwest Phoenix elementary school, there was a 35% mobility rate; 76%, free and reduced lunches; 35%, Spanish-speaking homes; 10%, ELL services; and 10%, special education. The school was comprised of 52 certified teachers, out of which there were five related arts teachers, and four teachers who served gifted and special education students. Participants included all eight third- and fourth-grade teachers, 75% female and 25% males; 75% identified as Caucasian and 25% Hispanic/Latina, middle-class citizens. Professional development training was provided to these eight individual teachers during four months on differentiated instructional strategies to support students’ critical thinking. At this study’s beginning, these teachers perceived an obstacle to supporting students’ critical thinking as they struggled to learn new curriculums. Persevering through this challenge, teachers discovered success by implementing design-thinking, developing students’ growth mindsets, and utilizing cultural responsive teaching. These teachers identified three differentiated instructional strategies which impacted students’ academic progress: instructional scaffolds, collaborative group work, and project-based learning. Building upon linguistic responsive teaching, cultural responsive teaching, and Vygotsky’s socio-cultural theory, teachers revealed how to support students’ critical thinking through the use of graphic organizers, sentence frames, explicit instructions, growth mindsets, cultural references, and grouping structures. In addition, the outcomes demonstrated teachers can make further use of differentiated instruction by focusing on instructional groups, teachers’ mindsets, and methods for teaching accelerated learners. This study’s results have implications on teachers’ perception toward using differentiated instructional strategies as a viable method to support the multiple ways all students learn.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2018

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The effect of cognitively guided instruction on primary students' math achievement, problem-solving abilities and teacher questioning

Description

The purpose of this study is to impact the teaching and learning of math of 2nd through 4th grade math students at Porfirio H. Gonzales Elementary School. The Cognitively Guided

The purpose of this study is to impact the teaching and learning of math of 2nd through 4th grade math students at Porfirio H. Gonzales Elementary School. The Cognitively Guided Instruction (CGI) model serves as the independent variable for this study. Its intent is to promote math instruction that emphasizes problem-solving to a greater degree and facilitates higher level questioning of teachers during their instructional dialogue with students. A mixed methods approach is being employed to see how the use of the CGI model of instruction impacts the math achievement of 2nd through 4th grade students on quarterly benchmark assessments administered at this school, to see how students problem-solving abilities progress over the duration of the study, and to see how teacher practices in questioning progress. Quantitative methods are used to answer the first of these research questions using archival time series (Amrein & Berliner, 2002) to view trends in achievement before and after the implementation of the CGI model. Qualitative methods are being used to answer questions around students' progression in their problem-solving abilities and teacher questioning to get richer descriptions of how these constructs evolve over the course of the study.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2012

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Fostering critical thinking in undergraduate nursing students

Description

ABSTRACT

Results from previous studies indicated nursing students needed to further develop critical thinking (CT) especially with respect to employing it in their clinical reasoning. Thus, the study was conducted to

ABSTRACT

Results from previous studies indicated nursing students needed to further develop critical thinking (CT) especially with respect to employing it in their clinical reasoning. Thus, the study was conducted to support development of students’ CT in the areas of inference subskills that could be applied as they engaged in clinical reasoning during course simulations. Relevant studies from areas such as CT, clinical reasoning, nursing process, and inference subskills informed the study. Additionally, the power of simulation as an instructional technique along with reflection on those simulations contributed to the formulation of the study. Participants included junior nursing students in their second semester of nursing school. They completed a pre- and post-intervention Critical Thinking Survey, reflective journals during the course of the intervention, and interviews as the conclusion of the study. The intervention provided students with instruction on the use of three inference subskills (Facione, 2015). Moreover, they wrote reflective journal entries about their use of these skills. Quantitative results indicated no changes in various CT measures. By comparison, qualitative data analysis of individual interviews and reflective journals showed students: applied inference subskills in a limited way; demonstrated restricted clinical reasoning; displayed emerging reflection skills; and established a foundation on which to build additional CT in their professional roles. Limitations of the study included time—length of the intervention and limited power of the instruction—depth of the instruction with respect to teaching the inference subskills. Discussion focused on explaining the results. Implications for teaching included revision of the instruction in inference subskills to be more robust by extending it over time, perhaps across courses. Additionally, use of a ‘flipped’ instructional process was discussed in which students would learn the subskills by viewing video modules prior to class and then are ‘guided’ to apply their learning in classroom health care simulations. Implications for research included closer examination of the development of CT in clinical reasoning to devise a developmental trajectory that might be useful to understand this phenomenon and to develop teaching strategies to assist students in learning to use these skills as part of the clinical reasoning process.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2017

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Towards predicting completion for United States Air Force (USAF) Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA) training

Description

Civilian and military use of remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) has significantly increased in recent years. Specifically, the United States Air Force (USAF) has an insatiable demand for RPA operations, that

Civilian and military use of remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) has significantly increased in recent years. Specifically, the United States Air Force (USAF) has an insatiable demand for RPA operations, that are responsible for fulfilling critical demands in every theater 24 hours a day, 365 days a year (United States Air Force, 2015). Around the clock operations have led to a manning shortage of RPA pilots in the USAF. The USAF MQ-9 “Reaper” Weapons School trains tactical experts and leaders of Airmen skilled in the art of integrated battle-space dominance (United States Air Force, 2015). Weapons Officers for the MQ-9 platform are also critically under-manned, with only 17% of allocated slots filled (B. Callahan, personal communication, January 28, 2016). Furthermore, the leading cause of training attrition has been attributed to lack of critical thinking and problem solving skills (B. Callahan, personal communication, January 28, 2016); skills not directly screened for prior to entering the RPA pilot career field. The proposed study seeks to discover patterns of student behaviors in the brief and debrief process in Weapons School, with the goal of identifying the competencies that distinguish the top students in Weapons School.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2017

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Asynchronous discussion board facilitation and rubric use in a blended learning environment

Description

The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of instructor response prompts and rubrics on students' performance in an asynchronous discussion-board assignment, their learning achievement on an objective-type

The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of instructor response prompts and rubrics on students' performance in an asynchronous discussion-board assignment, their learning achievement on an objective-type posttest, and their reported satisfaction levels. Researchers who have studied asynchronous computer-mediated student discussion transcripts have found evidence of mostly mid-level critical thinking skills, with fewer examples limited to lower or higher order thinking skill demonstration. Some researchers suggest that instructors may facilitate increased demonstration of higher-order critical thinking skills within asynchronous discussion-board activities. However, there is little empirical evidence available to compare the use of different external supports to facilitate students' critical thinking skills performance and learning achievement in blended learning environments. Results of the present study indicate that response prompts and rubrics can affect students' discussion performance, learning, and satisfaction ratings. The results, however, are complex, perhaps mirroring the complexity of instructor-led online learning environments. Regarding discussion board performance, presenting students with a rubric tended to yield higher scores on most aspects that is, on overall performance, as well as depth and breadth of performance, though these differences were not significant. In contrast, instructor prompts tended to yield lower scores on aspects of discussion board performance. On breadth, in fact, this main effect difference was significant. Interactions also indicated significant differences on several aspects of discussion board performance, in most cases indicating that the combination of rubric and prompt was detrimental to scores. The learning performance on the quiz showed, again, the effectiveness of rubrics, with students who received the rubric earning significantly higher scores, and with no main effects or interactions for instructor prompts. Regarding student satisfaction, again, the picture is complicated. Results indicated that, in some instances, the integration of prompts resulted in lower satisfaction ratings, particularly in the areas of students' perceptions of the amount of work required, learning in the partially online format, and student-to-student interaction. Based on these results, design considerations to support rubric use and explicit feedback in asynchronous discussions to support student learning are proposed.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2012

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The principal network: a model of peer collaboration around critical case studies of practice

Description

This action research study explored what would happen if a principal network was created to provide time for collaboration about critical case studies of practice. The participants in this

This action research study explored what would happen if a principal network was created to provide time for collaboration about critical case studies of practice. The participants in this study were novice and experienced principals in an elementary school district in Arizona. Based on the underpinnings of the Wallace Foundation principal support programs, the study was designed to combat the limited professional development offerings for in-service principals. Modeling the use of cases from the legal and medical professions, this study utilized case studies as the base for peer collaboration to extend the principals' critical thinking skills of relevance, breadth, and depth.

The study design aligned with adult learning theory and focused on authentic problem solving. Participants read case studies, completed individual case analysis, collaborated, and wrote reflections. The cases were intentionally selected to match current problems of practice for the participants. This mixed methods study followed a sequential analysis process beginning with qualitative analysis using a grounded theory approach and moving to quantitative analysis.

The results of this study indicated that the participants' ability to think critically about the problem (relevance) and its complexity (breadth and depth) increased over time. The data also showed that the principals gained an increased awareness and appreciation for multiple perspectives. Lastly, the participants valued the time to collaborate together, gain insight from one another and reduce feelings of isolation in their role as administrators. Future research should continue to explore the use of critical case studies of practice as a in participatory action research with in-service principals.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2015

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Using literature to help 4th and 5th grade students with disabilities living In poverty develop the problem-solving skills they need to be successful in their world

Description

The critical-thinking skill of problem solving needs to be part of the curriculum for all students, including those with learning disabilities living in poverty; yet, too often this is not

The critical-thinking skill of problem solving needs to be part of the curriculum for all students, including those with learning disabilities living in poverty; yet, too often this is not the case. Too often students in poverty and students with learning disabilities are provided a curriculum that is watered down, focused on the basics, and aimed at managing their behaviors instead of helping them learn to think critically about their world. Despite their challenges, these students can learn to problem solve. Educators need to help students make connections between the critical-thinking skills learned in school and the problem-solving skills needed for life. One solution might be to use literature with characters facing similar problems, hold grand conversations, and teach them a problem solving method. Together, these three parts have the potential to motivate and lead students to better thinking. This action research study explored whether literature with characters facing similar problems to the study's participants, grand conversations, and the I SOLVE problem solving method would help students with disabilities living in poverty in the Southwestern United States develop the problem-solving skills they need to understand and successfully navigate their world. Data were collected using a mixed methods approach. The Motivation to Read Profile, I SOLVE problem-solving survey, thought bubbles, student journals, transcripts from grand conversations, and researcher's journal were tools used. To understand fully how and to what extent literature and grand conversations helped students gain the critical thinking skill of problem solving, data were mixed in a convergence model. Results show the I SOLVE problem-solving method was an effective way to teach problem-solving steps. Scores on the problem-solving survey rose pre- to post-test. Grand conversations focused on literature with character's facing problems led to an increase in students' motivation to read, and this population of students were able to make aesthetic connections and interpretations to the texts read. From these findings implications for teachers are provided.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2012