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Schoolwide Instructional Strategies

Thinking Maps

Thinking Maps are eight fundamental thinking skills -- defining, describing, comparing and contrasting, classifying, sequencing, part-to-whole relationship, cause and effect, and seeing analogies -- defined and animated by maps and introduced as a common visual language for thinking and learning across the school community.
 
The maps are introduced over the first few weeks of the school year at each grade in different ways. Ultimately, every child in the school is able to represent their ways of thinking on a map and to create better written or spoken pieces of work as a result.
 

Interactive Writing

Also known as "sharing the pen," kindergarten and first-grade teachers use this strategy to enable emergent writers to produce a piece of writing while reducing the level of stress in the production. Effective in whole groups as well as with individuals, interactive writing requires that the child write the known letters, while the teacher writes that which is not yet known. In the process, the teacher gathers a great deal of information about the child’s academic needs and uses that information to design subsequent lessons.