Sunday, October 7, 2012


This week Lis used the thinking routine Think-Puzzle-Explore to introduce a new science unit about water.  According to our Thinking Routines Matrix, this routine is good at the beginning of a unit to direct personal or group inquiry and uncover current understandings as well as misconceptions.  It's key thinking moves are activating prior knowledge, wondering and planning.

Like many of my conversations with our CoT team, Lis' was excited about what this thinking routine revealed, the conversation it initiated, and the implications it could have throughout this unit of study.  During our conversation, Lis and I discussed the power of ownership, purpose, and context.  We both felt that this Thinking Routine will give students a sense of ownership, purpose, and context throughout this science unit.  I'll let Lis share more in the comments (hint, hint) and I hope the rest of you will, as well!

 Go to a lake and take some tests
Does it turn into a cloud? 
 Is there chemicals in water?
 How does water form?
 Look at a globe and look at the water around the world.
I want to explore how water got in the drain.


  1. It sure looks like your students are ready to learn, Lis! This routine can surely help motivate students and keep them engaged.

  2. This was a great way to start the unit. I was surprised by the puzzles that my students had and their exploration ideas were amazing! I personally think it would be very cool to take a field trip to Niagara Falls! Instead I promised them that we would take a virtual field trip there!
    One of the student's ideas is to look at a globe to see how much water there is on Earth.... this is actually the first lesson in our unit. It was so much better to say that it is "Kirsten's idea" than my own!