Justifying what we do: Criteria for the selection of literacy and thinking tools
Whitehead, D. (2006). Justifying what we do: Criteria for the selection of literacy and thinking tools. English in Aotearoa, 60, 27-40.
Permanent Research Commons link: http://hdl.handle.net/10289/2158
Teachers of English, along with teachers from across the curriculum, have a moral and professional responsibility to nurture literate thinkers. In this article I argue that teachers who accept this responsibility stand to teachers who don’t as imagination stands to memory, as co-construction in a discursive community of practice stands to transmission teaching, and as a sense of what strategic English teaching might be to what it sometimes is. Strategic teachers of English, like literate thinkers, deploy a range of literacy and thinking tools that help their students construct and deconstruct meaning. But what tools should we teach students? What criteria might we use to select those tools, and ultimately, to justify what we do? Nine selection criteria are proposed below, and then applied to evaluate the Effective Literacy Strategies in Years 9-13: A guide for teachers (MOE, 2004). Teachers who use these criteria to select literacy and thinking tools are more likely to nurture literate thinkers. But first, the description of these criteria is set in a wider context that informs
This article has been published in the journal: English in Aotearoa. ©2006 New Zealand Association for the Teaching of English. Used with permission.
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