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July Book Club: Big Questions for Young Minds: Extending Children's Thinking by Janis Strasser and Lisa Mufson Bresson

  • 1.  July Book Club: Big Questions for Young Minds: Extending Children's Thinking by Janis Strasser and Lisa Mufson Bresson

    Posted 07-06-2018 02:20 PM
    Dear Hello Community:

    I'm excited to remind you that we are about to start the second iteration of our online book club on HELLO. Our second book will be Big Questions for Young Minds: Extending Children's Thinking by Janis Strasser and Lisa Mufson Bresson. We invite you to jump in and explore the topics introduced in this book, with support from other members and the authors. Each week, the authors will post a question from the book for you to consider and will participate in the discussion over the course of this month.

    The first, introductory question will be posted this coming Monday - and then after that, a new question will be posted every Friday - just in time for you to think it over with your Saturday morning coffee as you read the Hello digest!

    How it Works:

    • If you don't already own it, purchase the book (if you're a member, use your 20% discount!).
    • Have you already read the book? Share how you've implemented it in the classroom with the Book Club!
    • Dive into the book.
    • Participate in the discussion.
    • Log into HELLO (if you're not a member, join now!) during the second week of July to analyze and talk through the first question.
    • Join the thread called "July Book Club: Big Questions for Young Minds".
    • Share your thoughts and discuss.
    Looking forward to all the great discussion,

    ------------------------------
    Kathy Charner
    National Association for the Education of Young Children
    Silver Spring MD
    ------------------------------


  • 2.  RE: July Book Club: Big Questions for Young Minds: Extending Children's Thinking by Janis Strasser and Lisa Mufson Bresson

    Posted 07-09-2018 08:54 AM
    I love this topic! It's so important for children to become thinkers.

    As an introduction to this book club discussion, members might want to listen to a 10-minute conversation with Janis Strasser, one of the authors. "Posing Big Questions to Young Children" can be found here: http://www.bamradionetwork.com/student-centric-strategies/4575-posing-big-questions-to-young-children


    ------------------------------
    Rae Pica
    Rae Pica Keynotes & Consulting
    Alexandria VA
    www.raepica.com
    ------------------------------



  • 3.  RE: July Book Club: Big Questions for Young Minds: Extending Children's Thinking by Janis Strasser and Lisa Mufson Bresson

    Posted 07-09-2018 11:39 AM
    Hi everyone,

    Welcome to our first week, I am excited to get this book club started! For this week's question, read the Introduction section (pp. 1-10) and the chapters in Part 1 (Using Questions in Classroom Interest Areas, pp. 11-47) that you are interested in or that apply to your interactions with children.

    Let's get started: What new questions have you tried or plan to try since reading this section? Why?

    ------------------------------
    Janis Strasser
    Professor
    William Paterson University
    Ridgewood NJ
    ------------------------------



  • 4.  RE: July Book Club: Big Questions for Young Minds: Extending Children's Thinking by Janis Strasser and Lisa Mufson Bresson

    Posted 07-10-2018 02:25 PM
    I was thrilled when this book landed on my desk. I provide science and nature field trip experiences for early childhood, as well as professional development for the teachers we work with and a huge part of either program focuses on how to structure questions that inspire higher-level thinking. I found the charts to be a great visual tool for me and am beginning to create similar charts with our own questions for our programs. It is something that I had been creating on a much simpler scale for parents in our storytime activities to promote conversation and co-learning for our families, but the structure presented in the book made me realize that maybe I should be doing something like that for our teachers! We had always discussed higher-level questioning and thinking, but the visual really simplifies it in the best way.

    ------------------------------
    Cheryl Potemkin
    Early Childhood Program Manager
    BRIT - Botanical Research Institute of Texas
    Fort Worth TX
    ------------------------------



  • 5.  RE: July Book Club: Big Questions for Young Minds: Extending Children's Thinking by Janis Strasser and Lisa Mufson Bresson

    Posted 07-10-2018 04:30 PM
    Hi Cheryl. That's great you find the organization of the charts helpful! Seeing questions written out as they progress from the lower to the higher levels, you can really begin to see how the levels flow into one another and how the complexity of the questions increase. This format is really helpful for adult visual learners! (like myself)
    What kinds of questions have you been incorporating into the charts you've already created? What were some of your ideas for incorporating them into the classrooms for teachers?

    ------------------------------
    Lisa Bresson
    Fair Lawn NJ
    ------------------------------



  • 6.  RE: July Book Club: Big Questions for Young Minds: Extending Children's Thinking by Janis Strasser and Lisa Mufson Bresson

    Posted 07-10-2018 04:18 PM
    I love the reminder to start a question with, "I wonder..." or "What do you notice..."  This is a common practice of mine and I love that these statements are open ended and elicit the child to really share what is in their mind's eye.

    I have been in early childhood classrooms for 16 years now and have spent the last year in a parent participation school, which I am loving.  Because I work alongside parents who are mostly untrained as teachers, part of my job is to aid parents in facilitating children's learning during play.  I have been thinking more about how to help parents formulate questions to children.  After reading this section, I am definitely going to post some sample questions in our Dramatic Play Room (such as, "How did you get that idea?"), in our Block Area (such as, "Which blocks make the most interesting buildings?  Why do you think so?"), and in our Writing Area (such as, "How does this piece of writing make you feel?  Why?").  I also want to have more temporary signs attached to activities such as Design Challenges, Science Inquiry, and Art Projects with appropriate questions parents can ask to engage with children.  My hope is that this will enhance children's learning in our school as well as help adults understand children's learning more clearly while helping them feel more engaged as well.

    ------------------------------
    Sherrie Rose Mayle
    Director/Teacher
    Campbell Parents' Participation Preschool
    Campbell, CA
    ------------------------------



  • 7.  RE: July Book Club: Big Questions for Young Minds: Extending Children's Thinking by Janis Strasser and Lisa Mufson Bresson

    Posted 07-12-2018 07:21 AM
    Those are such great ideas, Sherry, for the parent volunteers. Also, in case you haven't noticed, at the end of our book there is a section called "Resources for Families." There are 3 pages that you can photocopy or scan onto your website if you have one. These pages will help all parents think about asking good questions at home that relate to their children's day in preschool, during mealtimes, and when reading aloud to their children. As they get more adept at asking a variety of questions at home, hopefully, they can take this new knowledge into the classroom when they volunteer!
    Good luck and let us know how it is going.
    Best,
    Janis

    ------------------------------
    Janis Strasser
    Professor
    William Paterson University
    Ridgewood NJ
    ------------------------------



  • 8.  RE: July Book Club: Big Questions for Young Minds: Extending Children's Thinking by Janis Strasser and Lisa Mufson Bresson

    Posted 07-13-2018 08:57 AM
    Thank you, Janis, for pointing out this section of the book!  I am reading in pace with the discussion, so I hadn't peeked ahead yet.  I will definitely share this resource with parents and let you know how it's going.  Thanks for your support!


    ------------------------------
    Sherrie Rose Mayle
    Director/Teacher
    Campbell Parents' Participation Preschool
    Campbell, CA
    ------------------------------



  • 9.  RE: July Book Club: Big Questions for Young Minds: Extending Children's Thinking by Janis Strasser and Lisa Mufson Bresson

    Posted 07-14-2018 08:03 AM
    Love the idea of the temporary signs! It's good to have the more open-ended conversation starters as reminders like you said ("I wonder...." "What do you notice....") but to display as reminders those more focused lines of questioning relating to Design Challenges and Science Inquiry shows such intention in your teaching. Not only is the children's thinking extended, but our connection with individual children deepens when they see how genuinely interested we are in their work. As wonderful as it is for us as adults to feel like someone is really listening to us, it feels that wonderful tenfold for the kids!

    ------------------------------
    Lisa Bresson
    Fair Lawn NJ
    ------------------------------



  • 10.  RE: July Book Club: Big Questions for Young Minds: Extending Children's Thinking by Janis Strasser and Lisa Mufson Bresson

    Posted 07-09-2018 12:10 PM
    I just listened to the wonderful interview with Janis Strasser. The ideas of putting questions around the areas in the room was a revelation. I have many parent volunteers and giving these scaffolds will be very helpful.

    ------------------------------
    Betty Flint
    Teacher Pre-K
    Bakersfield City School District
    Bakersfield CA
    ------------------------------



  • 11.  RE: July Book Club: Big Questions for Young Minds: Extending Children's Thinking by Janis Strasser and Lisa Mufson Bresson