Shift from Information Enabler to Inquiry Facilitator

Punch busywork in the face. Ask questions instead of telling information. Don't tell students information they can find on their own. Once again, Alice Keeler has struck me square in the face. I stole a screen shot of her Google Keep note and pinned it to my bulletin board determined to filter every decision I make through these standards.

Recently, I participated in an in-service wherein the presenter made reference to "The Sage on the Stage." I remember sitting there thinking to myself, yeah, that's not me. I do Google classroom. I sit with my students and ask them questions. But after snatching Alice's keep and pinning it to my board and really reflecting on my practices, I began to realize, with horror, that I AM the Sage on the Stage. While I've always kind of prided myself on being a bit ahead of the ingenuity curve utilizing cooperative learning structures and ed tech as a means for students to engage, explore, and express their levels of learning and understanding, there is still an element of my practice that consists of my being the holder and provider of knowledge. I'm an information enabler! Whenever we have new content to cover, I stand up front and tell it my students. I even ask them to write down what I'm telling them! I haven't been encouraging my students to seek the information for themselves, rather they just instinctively turn to me to give it to them.
Time to change my game plan.
So I read some more blogs, I joined in some more twitter chats, and figured out a game plan for changing this. I printed off this Depth of Knowledge Wheel as well as this 4 C's of learning poster and began funneling my lesson plans through it. Following the wisdom of Shelley Burgess, I began planning with the idea to Live in DOK2 and DOK3, visit DOK1 and DOK4, all the while adhering to Alice Keeler's rule of thumb, to have at least 1 C in my lesson.
Here is a Google sheet activity I recently created to shift my pedagogy from an information enabler to a inquiry facilitator while employing the 4 C's of the 21st century: communication, collaboration, critical thinking, creativity.
Being able to teach vocabulary in a meaningful, un-isolated way has always been something I have struggled with, so I decided it should be the first one I would attack with my new standards: punch busywork in the face, ask questions don't tell information.
It is designed for students to work collaboratively through each of the DOKs with most of the emphasis on DOK2 and DOK3. Please copy it, use it, and share it if it helps you in your shift from information enabler to inquiry facilitator.

Teach in the way they are smart.


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