“It means Inspired Thinking…teaching our student how to think beyond looking for an answer.” Mrs. Carney, U.S. history teacher said. “It’s thinking outside that box and going beyond all that.” So if IT is just a way of thinking, why is IT so important to RHHS teachers and students?
To fully understand the concepts of IT, you first must have some form of background on the thinking process. How RHHS introduced that to the students was they sent an Esteban into every classroom. He was The Handsomest Drowned Man by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, and someone every student could relate to. To Principal Maglisceau, IT is, “making connections to more real-world application.” This is exactly what students did with their Esteban. They connected Esteban to their individual lives, so they could discuss him and share their opinions.
Many, like Sophomore Jamie Weanger, did not even realize that this was what they were doing. “I think people are just thinking sophomore and junior years are supposed to be the hardest years, so they are thinking in any way that makes sense to them. I don’t think we mean to do it.” Does it matter that students do not know that IT is influencing their learning. That teachers are purposely trying to force them to think in that manner, but not necessarily telling them what they are doing?
Mrs. Carney does not see an issue with this, “I think a lot of times if students hear inspired thinking, IT, They’re like oh no thinking! It’s kind of a turnoff to them, but by having them do some of these things they don’t really realize that’s what they are doing and it disguises it for them and doesn’t turn them off automatically.” Mrs. Harlan, the cheerleading coach and the Pre-AP and AP chemistry teacher adds “IT is an ongoing process and I think that by the end of the year, all the students will come to understand IT on their own terms.”
Intellectual Thinking is more than just a connection to your own life though. IT is a character booster. Mrs. Gunn, the junior AP English teacher said, “I think IT is so wonderful because it is not limited. When we set it out, we did not bind it and say this will be character building or a story analysis. Students made it what they wanted it to be.”
Intellectual thinking has already tremendously improved our school and many people still do not know its push on us. It has allowed students to open up a new flood gate of thinking that otherwise teachers may have never seen and students they might have not discovered it on their own. It’s so meaningful and important, like Maglisceau said, “Teachers and students working together for [a] deeper meaning can never be a waste of class time.”
IT is a relatively new system that was only just introduced to Heath through our staff’s participation in the Dallas Institute for the Humanities’ summer study program, and Bard College’s Language and Thinking Institute. It’s been amazing so far and like Mrs. Gunn said, “Every individual teacher and every individual student is going to have to find their own way to IT and discover how it works for them so they will see the benefits from it. It’s going to vary and I think that’s one of the beauties of it. It will look different in every single classroom across the campus.”
So, The Hawk Eye Staff is asking you, how do you use IT?