Teacher resources and professional development across the curriculum

Teacher professional development and classroom resources across the curriculum

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9. Thinking About Thinking - Metacognition
“We can teach children to think about their thinking in ways that help them understand what they know and what they don’t know and what they’d like to learn, and to help them reflect on their learning and to evaluate their work against a continuum that they’re on. All of those kinds of thinking actually make the learning process more powerful.”
Linda Darling-Hammond
teacher with student

Key Questions:
  • How can people learn by reflecting on what they know and do?
  • How can teachers help students think about their own thinking?
book  club

Learning Objectives:

  1. Defining metacognition – Teachers will understand what metacognition is and how it improves learning. They will become familiar with two aspects of metacognition: reflection and self-regulation.
  2. Developing metacognitive skills – Teachers will understand what it means to develop a culture of metacognition in the classroom. Teachers will become familiar with strategies for helping students regulate, monitor, and guide their learning.

Video Program

This episode explores how thinking about thinking helps students to better manage their own learning and to learn difficult concepts deeply. The episode features two teachers – Kendra Hearn, who teaches senior English at West Bloomfield High School, West Bloomfield, Michigan, and Kathleen Hayes-Parvin, who teaches sixth grade at Birney Middle School, Southfield, Michigan. University of Michigan professor Annemarie Sullivan Palincsar and Lee S. Shulman, President of the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching provide their insights for teachers.

Key Terms - New in this Session

formative assessment

metacognitive knowledge

metacognitive regulation



Go to related support materials.

Next Session: 10. How We Organize Knowledge – The Structure of the Disciplines

Previous Session: 8. Watch It, Do It, Know It – Cognitive Apprenticeship


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