Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Thinking Hard and Solid

Dear Colleagues,

"Rarely do we find men who willingly  engage in hard,
solid thinking. There
is an almost universal  quest for
answers and half-baked solutions.   Nothing pains
some people more
than having to think." 
(ML King—quoted on FB by a former WWC student.)
Had a cousin who built a different car up from scratch,
reinventing his wheels  every  year to drive from
Connecticut to California in the summertime
when he could have as easily used the
used cars parked in his yard
& available..  
A student years ago serving in a task  force  told us:
        your job  is to teach us how to think. 
I don’t know how.
I give them stuff  to think about.
Think about this; think about that.
I think  they are learning Critical  Thinking
just by reading and doing  their homework on time.
Labs too. And research.
Here’s my semester plan, I announce: aims, goals,
measurable  outcomes.  Here’s the list  of readings.
Here are dead lines for papers. Here’s the point
system for talking in class.  Here’s my policy on
unexcused  absences, my policies on plagiarism,
posters,  learning disabilities.

(I"m thinking hard and solid about this.)

Here’s where you can get help with writing assignments.
Here’s where you can get help empowering yourself.
Here are my office hours. Feel free. . .
If  you have any questions
at all, please:  feel free….

  Rubric Toward Achieving  Excellence  in Knowledge

A.  Demonstrates exceptional ability to conceptualize
      knowledge and demonstrates inventive thinking.
B.  Depth of knowledge up to date and relevant,
         reflects some in-depth and personal ideas.
C.  Depth of knowledge competent, some ability to
                 relate theory to practice.
D.  Superficial understanding of concepts,
          beginning to read between the lines.
E.  Minimal awareness of concepts.
          Restates what was taught or read.

I think on these things. Minimal awareness, to superficial,
competence to updated, relevance & exceptionally inventive
capacities--lets me be expert in assessing each notch toward
the top notch of excellence.

I tried to teach myself how to think awhil  back & ever  since,
long and hard,  and can’t  figure  it out. It beats me.

Easy answers and  half-baked solutions come in handy more
often than not & I’m appreciative. I would be ungracious
if I weren't.

xxxooo, Sam

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