Each month Abington Library will feature a favorite book from a faculty, staff member, or student. They will give a brief synopsis of their chosen book.
Dr. Kae Chatman is Associate Professor of English/Philosophy at ASU-Beebe.
Review of Making Thinking Visible by Ron Ritchhart, Mark Church and Karin Morrison
by Kae Chatman, PhD
Last spring, Drs. Humphrey and Whitehurst and I met on the second floor of the Abington Library to organize our work on our textbook Creative Composition. Among the many questions we had about how to relate writing skills acquisition to cognitive development. We wanted not just another "how to write a comparison essay" book but a "how to think through a comparative analysis" book. I found the answer sitting on a table in our meeting room: Making Thinking Visible: How to Promote Engagement, Understanding, and Independence for All Learners by Ron Ritchhart, Mark Church and Karin Morrison (San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2011).
Making Thinking Visible offers "thinking routines," or "simple strategies for scaffolding thinking" so that students are neither discouraged nor coerced into thinking, but instead led through the process of finding answers to questions rather than merely completing an assignment.
We wanted our textbook to emphasize the thought process involved in writing personal essays, analysis papers and argument essays. This wonderful book gave me the confidence that our instincts about how to develop our text were in line with our teaching experience and commitment to critical thinking in our Freshman English classes.