e-book Put thinking to the test

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If students are constantly bombarded with questions that require only low levels of intellectual involvement or no involvement whatsoever , they will tend to think accordingly.

Conversely, students who are given questions based on higher levels of thinking will tend to think more creatively and divergently. Many years ago, an educator named Benjamin Bloom developed a classification system we now refer to as Bloom's Taxonomy to assist teachers in recognizing their various levels of question-asking among other things.

The system contains six levels, which are arranged in hierarchical form, moving from the lowest level of cognition thinking to the highest level of cognition or from the least complex to the most complex :. Observations of both elementary and secondary classrooms has shown that teachers significantly overuse knowledge questions. In fact, during the course of an average day, many teachers will ask upward of or more knowledge-based questions.

This is the lowest level of questions and requires students to recall information. Knowledge questions usually require students to identify information in basically the same form it was presented. Some examples of knowledge questions include …. Words often used in knowledge questions include know , who , define , what , name , where , list , and when. Share those questions and discuss possible answers with a partner.

Simply stated, comprehension is the way in which ideas are organized into categories. Comprehension questions are those that ask students to take several bits of information and put them into a single category or grouping. These questions go beyond simple recall and require students to combine data together. Some examples of comprehension questions include ….

Words often used in comprehension questions include describe , use your own words , outline , explain , discuss , and compare. In analysis , you move from the whole to the parts. In synthesis , you move from the parts to the whole.


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At this level, teachers ask students to take information they already know and apply it to a new situation. In other words, they must use their knowledge to determine a correct response. Some examples of application questions include …. Words often used in application questions include apply , manipulate , put to use , employ , dramatize , demonstrate , interpret , and choose. An analysis question is one that asks a student to break down something into its component parts. To analyze requires students to identify reasons, causes, or motives and reach conclusions or generalizations.

Some examples of analysis questions include …. Words often used in analysis questions include analyze , why , take apart , diagram , draw conclusions , simplify , distinguish , and survey. Synthesis questions challenge students to engage in creative and original thinking. These questions invite students to produce original ideas and solve problems.

There's always a variety of potential responses to synthesis questions.

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Levels of Questions in Bloom's Taxonomy

Some examples of synthesis questions include …. Words often used in synthesis questions include compose , construct , design , revise , create , formulate , produce , and plan. Evaluation requires an individual to make a judgment about something. We are asked to judge the value of an idea, a candidate, a work of art, or a solution to a problem.

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When students are engaged in decision-making and problem-solving, they should be thinking at this level. Evaluation questions do not have single right answers. Some examples of evaluation questions include …. Words often used in evaluation questions include judge , rate , assess , evaluate , What is the best … , value , criticize , and compare.

1. What is Design Thinking, and where does testing come into it?

Nothing could be further from the truth! Challenging all students through higher-order questioning is one of the best ways to stimulate learning and enhance brain development—regardless of age. What does all this mean?

Several things, actually! It means you can ask your students several different kinds of questions. If you only focus on one type of question, your students might not be exposed to higher levels of thinking necessary to a complete understanding of a topic.

Put Thinking To The Test

If, for example, you only ask students knowledge-based questions, then your students might think that learning a specific topic is nothing more than the ability to memorize a select number of facts. You can use this taxonomy to help craft a wide range of questions—from low-level thinking questions to high-level thinking questions. If variety is the spice of life, you should sprinkle a variety of question types throughout every lesson, regardless of the topic or the grade level you teach. Bloom's Taxonomy is not grade-specific. That is, it does not begin at the lower grades kindergarten, first, second with knowledge and comprehension questions and move upward to the higher grades tenth, eleventh, twelfth with synthesis and evaluation questions.

The six levels of questions are appropriate for all grade levels. Perhaps most important, students tend to read and think based on the types of questions they anticipate receiving from the teacher. Martin CAPT Thinking or Feeling. Thinking T When I make a decision, I like to find the basic truth or principle to be applied, regardless of the specific situation involved.

The following statements generally apply to me: I enjoy technical and scientific fields where logic is important. I notice inconsistencies.

Bloom's Taxonomy Questions for Students - TeacherVision

I look for logical explanations or solutions to most everything. I make decisions with my head and want to be fair. I believe telling the truth is more important than being tactful. Sometimes I miss or don't value the "people" part of a situation. I can be seen as too task-oriented, uncaring, or indifferent. Feeling F I believe I can make the best decisions by weighing what people care about and the points-of-view of persons involved in a situation.

The following statements generally apply to me: I have a people or communications orientation. I am concerned with harmony and nervous when it is missing.


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I look for what is important to others and express concern for others. I make decisions with my heart and want to be compassionate. I believe being tactful is more important than telling the "cold" truth. Sometimes I miss seeing or communicating the "hard truth" of situations.