8 Habits of Mind
Stick to it!
Persevering in task through to completion; remaining focused.
Take your time!
Thinking before acting; remaining calm and deliberative.
Listening for understanding and empathy:
Devoting mental energy to another person's thoughts and ideas; holding in abeyance one's own thoughts in order to perceive another's point of view and emotions.
Look at it another way!
Being able to change perspectives, generate alternatives, consider options.
Thinking about your Thinking: (Metacognition)
Know your knowing!
Being aware of your thoughts, feelings, and actions (& their effects on others).
Striving for Accuracy and Precision:
Check it again!
A desire for exactness, fidelity and craftsmanship.
Questioning and Problem Posing:
How do you know?
Having a questioning attitude. Finding problems to solve.
Applying Past Knowledge to New Situations:
Use what you learn!
Accessing prior knowledge; transferring knowledge beyond the situation in which it was learned.
When I began teaching at WRA in the fall of 2005, my department head Tom Davis at the time, fondly called T.D. by faculty and students alike, shared with me these 8 Habits of mind. Thus, I shared it with my three sections of freshman English at the very beginning of the school year, earnestly lecturing and then returning to it throughout the year. I shared it for a few years and as life happens, I strayed with new ideas and new openings. We miss T.D. since he's retired, but his spirit and wisdom lives with us as a department - not to mention hundreds of past students.
While embracing new technologies, I am going back to basics with the 8 Habits of Mind in 2012 with my sophomores and juniors. I will also share it with the freshman as a class dean.
And here's why - an email from a former freshman from that fall of 2005.
I had received the email a couple years ago, but last Friday during a lively English department meeting, we were talking of TD's 8 Habits of Mind, and I was reminded me of the email and with the power of gmail search, I found it in seconds. I read it aloud to my colleagues, and I share it with you below:
(I must confess I edited in a few missing apostrophes for contractions and added capitalization which drives me nuts - but otherwise. I changed nothing - the ps included!
I felt inclined to send you an email and make sure you're still alive and well at good ol' Reserve! I also wanted to let you know a little information you may appreciate. I don't know if you still do this with your freshman English class, but the first day (or something like it) you imparted the "Eight Habits of Mind" on us. If I remember correctly, I was probably a jackass poking stifler's afro or rocking in my chair apathetically. But now I find myself at the College of Wooster wishing I'd taken that time a little more seriously. I am writing a paper on what i have experienced in my life that has contributed to the development of my "literate self". Long story short, I am choosing to write a portion of it on the Habits of Mind, because even though I was most likely screwing around, I was most definitely listening to that lecture, because I still find it a useful resource, especially in the coming stress's of college!
Anyways, be safe and keep it real.
ps...I'm doing yoga every week.