Garfield Gini-Newman on...Creating Thinking Classrooms

Thursday, September 13, 2018

Garfield Gini-Newman and Roland Case have created an strategy packed book, loaded with stories, and examples to reinvigorate today’s schools. The following is an excerpt from the preface of Creating Thinking Classrooms: Leading Educational Change for This Century.


This book is for classroom, district, and university educators who are working to make schools effective institutions for developing all students’ capacity for rigours and imaginative thinking so that they can become healthy individuals, contributing global citizens, thoughtful consumers of media, and adaptable learners who can thrive in a rapidly changing world.

Our goal is to help educators at all levels to understand and respond thoughtfully to the diverse and sometimes overwhelming calls for school reform that currently dominate public and professional attention. These calls are noisy, confusing, and not entirely coherent. We hope to separate the rhetoric from the reality surrounding many of the popular buzzwords and vague claims associated with learning in the contemporary world. In addition, we seek to unpack the widely recommended goals, initiatives, and pedagogical practices that advocates of reform are championing. Finally we propose an approach supported with practical advice to educators in their efforts to navigate the substantial, often upsetting, challenges of educational change.

The most significant contribution of this book lies in its attempt to clarify and bring coherence to the current reform efforts. When distilled to its essentials, this movement represents a desire to shift the educational system in three important ways involving nine core ideas:

  • Shift 1: Reorient the foundational beliefs about teaching and learning from the mindset characteristic of a discovery or didactic classroom to that of a thinking classroom.

  • Shift 2: Refocus attention on more enriched versions of the three traditional educational goals, moving from fostering knowledge to deep understanding, from skills to real-life competencies, and from attitudes to genuine commitments.

  • Shift 3: Align teaching practices with five key principles of powerful learning. These guiding principles are to engage students, sustain inquiry, nurture self-regulated learners, create assessment-rich learning, and enhance learning through digital technology.


Interested to learn more? Click here for a sample first chapter of Creating Thinking Classrooms. Click here to purchase a copy of Creating Thinking Classrooms, or copies will be available on October 4th at the Manitoba ASCD workshop.


Posted by Meghan Burns at 8:42 PM

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