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Thinking Moves:

Essential Steps in Developing Deep Understanding


Thinking Moves
Observing closely and
describing whats there
Making connections

Wondering and asking


questions
Building explanations and
interpretations
Reasoning with evidence

Uncovering complexity and


going below the surface
Considering different
viewpoints and perspectives
Capturing the heart and
forming conclusions

Observable Thinking Behaviours


Notice parts and features
Take detailed notes to record observations
Describe parts and features in detail
Connect new information with whats known
Identify patterns and perspectives
Identify areas of agreement and disagreement
between sources
Imagine possible connections and implications
Relate ideas to emotions and values
Create questions to propel further inquiry
Examine similarities and differences
Hypothesize and test ideas
Apply theories to explain phenomenon
Search for evidence to support claims
Check for validity and soundness
Verify sufficiency of detail to support claims

Identify and reject simplistic explanations


Search for alternative evidence and explanations
Examine all parts of issues to explore complexity
Search for deep causes
Search for alternative explanations
Evaluate the evidence of opposing perspectives
Self-assess and revise own arguments in light of
alternative explanations and evidence
Capturing the essence of a concept
Forming a reasoned judgement based on
foregoing thinking

Questions to Drive Thinking


What do you see and notice?
What are the facts here?
How does this fit?
How does this relate to other
concepts, or what I already know?
What am I curious about here?
Why does ____?
Whats similar and different here?
How can I explain ________?
Are these claims logical and
supported by convincing
evidence?
What lies beneath the surface of
this?
Whats another angle on this?
How might someone argue
against this or see it differently?

Whats at the core or centre of


this?
Whats the Big Idea here?
NOTE: Thinking for Deep Understanding is NOT a linear processit is recursive! There are logical steps,
but they usually need to be repeated multiple times, often in different orders, to really dig down deep
into complex concepts. Thinking for Deep Understanding is rarely easy and orderly; its usually difficult
and messy at first, which is all the more reason to develop detailed, organized notes.

Thinking Moves
Observing closely
and describing
whats there

Observable Thinking Behaviours


Notice parts and features
Take detailed notes to record
observations
Describe parts and features in detail

Actions that Demonstrate Deep Thinking

Supreme Court Declares Same-Sex


Marriage Legal In All 50 States
"They ask for equal dignity in the
eyes of the law," Kennedy wrote of samesex couples in the case. "The Constitution
grants them that right."
right to marry is fundamental
and Kennedy wrote that under the 14th
Amendment's protections, "couples of the
same-sex may not be deprived of that
right and that liberty
provide the same benefits to both
gay and heterosexual couples.
Let States Decide on Marijuana
The Attorney General or the
secretary of health and human service can
change the law.
Laws should be changed to ensure
that future administrations can not
reimpose the ban
States decriminalized it despite
national law because they find it a waste of
police resources to arrest marijuana
possessors
abortion, health insurance,
marriage equality and marijuana should
be decided by states based on their
cultures and values.
Justice department: no minors,

gangs, exporting no driving, yes banks


Aggressive state prosecutors can sue
if state enforcement efforts are not
sufficiently robust
Eliminate marijuana from the
Controlled Substances Act, require a
federal permit from growing and
distributing
regulated by FDA and the Bureau of
Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and
explosives
Liberal democrats and Republicans
voted 219 to 189 to prohibit the DEA from
prosecuting people who use medical
marijuana in legal states
obama can ask the AG to conduct
studies necessary to support the removal
of marijuana from Schedule I
Editorial: Are states rights human
rights?
The Supreme Court is not
representative of the whole population.
Our nation is a republic, a
democracy, a nation in which we govern
ourselves.
We, the citizens, are supposed to
have the power. So why did individual
states not have the opportunity to vote on
this issue
sets a dangerous precedent,
possibly even threatening states rights in
the future.
We feel the states should have been

allowed the right to vote on same-sex


marriage laws within their state.
As citizens living in a democratic
nation, we should have had the right to
decide for ourselves.
Washington is divided because it has
abandoned federalism
Founders viewed the nation not as
one monolithic entity but as a union of
sovereign entities delegating limited
powers to a central government.
power of smaller states in the
Senate puts liberalism at a political
disadvantage.
the United States was never
intended to be a pure democracy, but a
representative republic.
states are divided among
themselves.
The architecture of the Constitution
offers a natural solution to this problem.
Instead of trying to solve every issue at the
national level, power should be shifted
back to the states.
Under such a system, instead of
bitterly hashing out every issue in
Washington, Congress could be focusing
on a limited range of issues.
Its clear that liberals dont see
things this way. But it should be no
surprise that their efforts to impose onesize-fits-all solutions across the nation
encounter so much resistance.

Making connections

Connect new information with whats


known

Smaller States Find Outsize Clout


Growing in Senate
Republicans control smaller states
smaller states have disproportionate
power
widening demographic gap
benefits conservatives and hurt
liberals
bills that the majority supports
dont pass
DC+8 states will give their electoral
vote to the national popular vote winning
person if they have 138 more votes

the advantage is necessary to


prevent small states from becoming a
voiceless minority
Larger cities already have enought
power most major government agencies,
news media organizations, companies and
universitie
Legislators represent people, not
trees or acres, Chief Justice Warren wrote
for the court in 1964, rejecting the
argument that state senators, like federal
ones, could represent geographic areas
with varying populations. Legislators are
elected by voters, not farms or cities or
economic interests.

Bills die in the Senate

Supreme Court Declares Same-Sex

Identify patterns and perspectives


Identify areas of agreement and
disagreement between sources

Marriage Legal In All 50 States


Marriage equality is a constitutional right, states
can not infringe peoples liberty
Let States Decide on Marijuana
States should decide on issues based on their
cultures.

Washington is divided because it has


abandoned federalism
Congress should be limited to act on a small range of
issues because the United States is multi-cultural.
One solution can not fit all states.

Editorial: Are states rights human


rights?
States should have a say over marriage equality
Smaller States Find Outsize Clout
Growing in Senate
Smaller states have unproportionate power. It
undermines democracy.
Supreme Court Declares Same-Sex
Marriage Legal In All 50 States would disagree
with Let States Decide on Marijuana, Editorial:
Are states rights human rights?, and
Washington is divided because it has abandoned
federalism (but its talking about congress
specifically)
Smaller States Find Outsize Clout Growing in
Senate will probably disagree with other authors
Wondering and
asking questions

Imagine possible connections and


implications

Let States Decide on Marijuana, Editorial: Are


states rights human rights?, and Washington is

Relate ideas to emotions and values


Create questions to propel further
inquiry

divided because it has abandoned federalism


assumes that even though the United State is
multi-cultural, people in the same state hold
same cultural beliefs.
When states (especially conservative states) are
allowed to act based on their majoritys cultural
values, can individual inalienable rights be
infringed?
States should not be able to violate constitution
granted rights even with the majority's
support(majority tyranny). Is there a checks and
balances system within states?

Building
explanations and
interpretations

Examine similarities and differences

States should not be able to violate constitution


granted rights even with the majority's support.

Hypothesize and test ideas


Summarize the main idea

Reasoning with
evidence

Search for evidence to support claims


Check for validity and soundness

Uncovering
complexity and going
below the surface

Verify sufficiency of detail to support


claims
Identify and reject simplistic
explanations
Search for alternative evidence and
explanations
Examine all parts of issues to explore
complexity

There are gay people are recreational drug users in


states. Their voices are not being heard. Since
smaller states given power equal power in the senate
to prevent from becoming a voiceless minority,
shouldnt the same apply to minorities within states?
People like to impose their cultural beliefs on others
is probably why minorities within states isnt heard.

Considering different
viewpoints and
perspectives

Search for deep causes


Search for alternative explanations
States should not infringe personal freedom.
Evaluate the evidence of opposing
perspectives
Self-assess and revise own arguments in
light of alternative viewpoints

Capturing the heart


and forming
conclusions

States should not be able to violate constitution


granted rights even with the majority's
Forming a reasoned judgement based on support(majority tyranny). The Congress should be
limited to act on a small range of issues. However,
foregoing thinking
the federal court should be able to rule state laws on
any aspects unconstitutional, or there can be checks
and balance system within states(this might not be
an effective measure to prevent majority tyranny
within states because most people in the state system
might have similar beliefs)
Capturing the essence of a concept