My connection to chapter three is personal on many levels. When speaking, my focus is often on word choice. Am I using the right words to say what I mean? Or am I selecting vocabulary I assume the listener will understand? Ritchhart (2015) says word choice should be an important and deliberate act. He speaks about how our language choices shape "our behavior, interactions, thinking attention, and feelings in ways that we might mot be consciously aware of" (Ritchhart, 2015, p. 64).
In the book, Creating cultures of thinking, the focus is on the use of language in a classroom setting. It was a joy to read about how the words a teacher chooses to use can evoke specific responses of thought. I am sure we do this now, but we need to be more cognizant of this process. If not, here is a professional development discussion we need to have. And chapter three is our guide. Ritchhhart (2015) stated how "our language helps to shape out intention and that of our students, making it worthwhile to examine our language and strive to harness its power" (p.65). Here is a worthy goal for the fall. Coaching and practicing the intentional use of language can have a tremendous impact in creating a culture of thinking teachers and students.
Now, I haven't finished reading chapter three. I just got excited about the topic. As I read further into the chapter it discussed how word choice isn't the only objective. How we interact in conversations is important as well. Gauging a conversation tells us what is understood and where meaning might be lost or need more clarification. In a classroom setting "interactional language conveys interest in the students' thinking and signals authentic engagement with the task at hand" (Ritchhart, 2015, p.65).
What should the language of thinking be in our buildings? Communities? Our identities as teachers, leaders, e-trainers? We have T-2-4 and the 'one team one goal' motto. What language should are we using to reach this shared objective?
Sidenote: I find it was funny how my spell checker wants me to add a verb between creating and cultures in the book title. Lol!
Ritchhart, R. (2015). Creating cultures of thinking. San Fransico, CA: Jossey-Bass.