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Teach Me to Think- Developing Thinking and Judgement in High School Science

Title:      Teach Me to Think- Developing Thinking and Judgement in High School Science
Categories:      High School, Twelfth, Eleventh, Tenth, Ninth, Science, Inner Life of the Teacher, General Waldorf Curriculum, General Waldorf Education
BookID:      727
Authors:      Craig Holdrege
ISBN-10(13):      none
Publisher:      Waldorf Publications
Publication date:      12-1-2001
Number of pages:      16
Language:      English
Rating:      0 
Picture:      cover

From the Abstract:

In this Waldorf High School Research Project my aim is to research and demonstrate that Science teaching in the Waldorf high school can stimulate critical scientific inquiry, while also cultivating the students’ sense for responsibility. I researched how different facets of thinking and judgment can be exercised during the four years of high school. In this way we can develop the curriculum around the needs of the developing minds of the students. In this work I drew largely on the Waldorf science curriculum and on my own 21 years’ experience of teaching high school science. This project gave me the opportunity to focus, clarify and express more clearly how science teaching in the high school can become an essential tool for helping students to become critical, yet empathetic and responsible people.
        I present my work in the following essay. I illustrate, using concrete examples from different main lesson blocks, how one can help the students to develop facility in:     

questioning and seeing the world as a riddle
logical thinking anchored in observation
complex thinking
and holistic thinking      

In the ninth and tenth grade it is good to emphasize the first two movements of thought. Building on this work, we can progress to the more subtle and diffícult challenges of complex and holistic thinking in the eleventh and twelfth grades. In this approach the whole human thought organism is addressed. It also becomes evident that thinking is not only intimately connected with observation, but also with feeling and willing. The whole human being is involved in thinking when it is healthy.
Working with thinking and science in this way helps students to develop capacities humanity direly needs in order to address contemporary social and environmental problems in a healthy manner.

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