I enjoyed reading "Fostering Reflection" by Lana Danielson because it clearly outlines the four types of thinking and connects those modes to reflective practice. This prompted me to think about how I normally reflect and how we as teachers ask students to reflect. I hadn't really thought about different kinds of thinking and how it could relate to reflection; it may be a bit shallow, but I thought reflection is reflection. And I have to believe that this is a common assumption. So let's look at the four types of thinking and how reflection can be used as a component of student learning.
- Technologic or Formulaic Thinking-- procedural thinking that is based on pre-existing knowledge that comes from somewhere outside of the thinker
- This kind of reflective thinking would be good for students to examine a process that is based on an already-established protocol.
- Situational Thinking-- thinking that is rooted in an immediate moment in time and does not look beyond the moment to any root causes
- Students can be urged to use situational thinking to guide behavior from moment to moment, but this kind of thinking will not serve to solve any core problems.
- Deliberate Thinking-- deeper thinking that is used to go beyond the immediate situation to understand the core issue
- Students can use this type of thinking to understand better understand a process or situation. The students can call on outside expertise. The students can reflect on a procedure that they are engaging in within a group project or within a lab environment, in order to understand why it is or is not working.
- Dialectical Thinking-- thinking that builds on deliberate thinking to generate solutions
- This is the perfect kind of thinking to use in a project-based learning situation as the students work through an issue and proposing solutions.