Saturday, November 1, 2014

2014 November 1 | David Gann | A Four-step process for critical thinking instruction

A Four-step process for critical thinking instruction

Date and Time: Saturday, 1 November 2014 - 2:00pm - 4:00p
Speaker: David Gann

David Gann will present on the materials and resources for critical thinking instruction that he has helped develop over the past four years. These include (1) Critically Minded, a fourteen-episode podcast aimed at explicit instruction of critical thinking as a language-based skill set; (2) online text reconstruction exercises (TREs) of two kinds, the first focusing on argument indicators (AIs), and the second focusing on dialectical discourse items (DDIs) commonly used to initiate various modes of communication related to negotiating shared understandings; (3) online asynchronous computer-mediated communication (CMC) in which learners put the recently learned language and metalanguage to use in real communication and collaboration in a content-based learning environment; and (4) in-class group discussion where learners use the same or similar language in face-to-face communication. He will also discuss the assessment tools that he has developed for tracking students’ progress. Attendees will gain an enhanced understanding of critical thinking instruction and a practical understanding of the resources which they are invited to use in their own classes.

The main focus of this workshop will be the use of the multi-media-based text-reconstruction exercises. David Gann has been working since 2010 on producing these materials and has presented and published across Japan on their implementation and on the language learning theory that supports their use. Hitherto, these have been best described as “Under Construction,” being piloted and repeatedly redrafted over the last two-and-a-half years. They are now ready for public viewing and widespread use by any interested language teachers.

This presentation is intended as a workshop from which attendees will gain a hit-the-ground-running knowledge of how to teach basic critical thinking skills through a course design that:

• Is student-centered
• Has realistic goals and produces significant results
• Is based on a concrete definition of critical thinking
• Guarantees an high degree of student engagement
• Uses blended learning and a flipped classroom style of teaching to foster actualized learner autonomy
• Provides teachers with a both qualitative and quantitative basis for assessment—and a tools for performing that assessment
• Is a tremendous amount of fun

Attendees should be prepared for a presentation that may redefine and revitalize their idea of what critical thinking instruction can be.

Bio: David Gann has been teaching in Japan since 1996 after graduating with an M.A. in English Literature. He recently completed a second M.A. in Educational Technologies and TESOL at the University of Manchester and is currently enrolled in a doctoral program at Open University at Milton Keynes, U.K. He is an Assistant Professor at Tokyo University of Science. His main interests include critical thinking instruction, CALL and learner autonomy. He is the co-founder and current Coordinator of JALT Critical Thinking SIG, and is also co-producer of the language learning podcast, Critically Minded and blog of the same name, where self-produced critical thinking-related language learning resources can be accessed.
Fee for JALT members: Free
Fee for one-day members: 1,000 yen, students free

Contact or Queries: Email contact form

Location: Siebold University of Nagasaki
1-1-1 Manabino Nagayo-cho Nagasaki Pref. Japan. 851-2195Guide to Location: Link to meeting location

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