Most importantly, how could they be used? By creating visual representations of thought, leaders create shared understandings and foster connections among staff. There are 17 chapters offering research and results, grouped into four sections: Thinking, Language and Learning, Integrating Content and Process, Whole Learning Communities and Professional Development. The authors describe Thinking Maps as a language of visual tools grounded in the thinking process, a most neurally apt description.

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Thinking Maps are a step up from graphic organizers. They are a visual representation of organizing information and using critical and creative thinking skills when reading a text. Thinking Maps focus on strategies to help with brainstorming, describing, comparing and contrasting, classifying, whole to part relationships, sequencing, cause and effect, seeing analogies.

All of these strategies are a part of higher order thinking. Hyerle and Yeager report "Thinking maps is a language of eight visual patterns each based on a fundamental thinking process. These patterns are used individually and in combination across every grade level and curriculum area as an integrated set of tools for life-long learning" p.

Caine and Caine stress "Our function as educators is to provide our students with the sorts of experiences that enable them to perceive patterns that connect" p. When students are writing, reading, and discussing they learn to recognize their thought processes.

Hyerle and Yeager explain "Students who consistently use the same visual pattern for a specific thought process soon have visual patterns for thinking" p. Using these tools and strategies of Thinking Maps allow students to become independent learners. One of the biggest questions teachers have pondered about is how and why does certain material stick in the brain and some of it is forgotten. Brooks states "The search for meaning is the purpose of learning; so, teaching for meaning is the purpose of teaching" p.

Scientists think that the brain is tries to do two things; respond to emotions and make incoming material meaningful. When teaching new information it is important to use emotion and meaning to engage students in learning.

The brain is built to keep individuals alive and keeping students focused is an important factor. The purpose of Thinking Maps is to help students make learning meaningful Hyerle and Yeager, , p.


Thinking Maps

David Hyerle After gaining his elementary and secondary teaching credentials from the Bay Area Writing Project and teaching in the Oakland and Berkeley public schools, David received his doctorate from UC Berkeley with continuing studies as an Exchange Scholar for two years at the Harvard School of Education. He is an international leader in the field of thinking skills development, critical reflection, and 21st century learning. David has always attempted to integrate the fields of cognitive-neuroscience, high quality collaborative teaching and learning models, and assessment into the fabric of everyday classroom teaching. ASCD Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development honored his work by distributing his visual tools book to over , educators worldwide. Recent published writings by David include insights into assessment, knowledge cartography knowledge creation and transfer , visual representations of data and the direct facilitation of dispositions of thinking, or Habits of Mind Costa and Kallick. Since , when David formalized the approach for working across schools at every level from pre-K to college, the Thinking Maps, Inc. Presently, David is Co-Director of Thinking Schools International, a consulting group working around the world to share an integrated approach to educational transformation in places such as Ethiopia, Norway, Brazil, the UK and Malaysia.


David Hyerle

Write from the Beginning…and Beyond Jane C. Buckner, Ed. Future modes to be released include Expository, Argumentative, and Summary writing. Setting the Stage This manual is the introductory piece for all modes of writing. This manual, in conjunction with the intensive Training of Trainers professional development plan, prepares educators in the skills necessary to train others within their own region, district, or school. A CD containing PowerPoint presentations for trainers is included with this manual. Response to Literature This spiral-bound manual explains the background information necessary for responding to literature eg, stages of understanding, types of oral and open-ended written responses, and various types of prompts.

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