Envisioning Knowledge: Building Literacy in the Academic Disciplines

Overview

This book by Judith Langer-internationally known scholar in literacy learning-examines how people gain knowledge and become academically literate in the core subjects of English, mathematics, science, and social studies/history. Based on extensive research, it offers a new framework for conceptualizing knowledge development (rather than information collection), and explores how one becomes literate in ways that mark "knowing" in a field. Langer identifies key principles for practice and demonstrates how the ...

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Envisioning Knowledge: Building Literacy in the Academic Disciplines

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Overview

This book by Judith Langer-internationally known scholar in literacy learning-examines how people gain knowledge and become academically literate in the core subjects of English, mathematics, science, and social studies/history. Based on extensive research, it offers a new framework for conceptualizing knowledge development (rather than information collection), and explores how one becomes literate in ways that mark "knowing" in a field. Langer identifies key principles for practice and demonstrates how the framework and the principles together can undergird highly successful instruction across the curriculum. With many examples from middle and high schools, this resource will help educators to plan and implement engaging, exciting, and academically successful programs.

Essential reading for pre- and inservice teachers and curriculum developers, this book:

Offers a new framework on content-area literacy, building on a decade of research and responding to the implications of high-stakes testing.

Connects to current concerns about adolescent literacy, offering ways for educators to understand essential distinctions between knowledge and information.

Treats new literacies in the digital-age classroom as an essential context for teaching and learning.

Includes examples of instructional activities that will engage students in critical and creative thinking.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780807751589
  • Publisher: Teachers College Press
  • Publication date: 12/5/2010
  • Series: Language and Literacy Series, #107
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 192
  • Sales rank: 1,339,767
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface xi

1 Envisioning Knowledge: An Introduction 1

Academic Literacy 2

The Growth of Academic Literacy 3

Why Academic Literacy Matters 11

Literate Thinking and Gaining Knowledge 12

Summing Up 14

2 The Origins of Envisionment Building 16

Envisionment Building 16

Stances During Envisionment Building 21

The Stances as an Instructional Tool 23

Summing Up 27

3 How We Build Literate Knowledge 28

Orientations Toward Meaning 28

How the Orientations Affect Instruction 30

How the Orientations Relate to One Another 32

Fostering Both Orientations in Disciplinary Classes 36

Summing Up 38

4 Envisionment-Building Classrooms 39

What Envisionment-Building Classrooms Look Like 41

Features of Minds-On Teaching 43

The Individual Within the Group 51

Summing Up 51

5 Envisionment Building in Social Studies/History 53

Instructional Foci in Social Studies/History 55

A Minds-On Social Studies/History Class 57

Using the Stances in 8th-Grade Social Studies/History Special Education 67

Online Discussion in a High School World History Class 73

Summing Up 75

6 Envisionment Building in Science 77

What and How Scientists Know 78

An 8th-Grade Science Class: Sustained Discussion and Writing About Experiments 80

Thinking Critically in a High School Physics Class 88

Summing Up 90

7 Envisionment Building in Mathematics 92

Learning Mathematics by Engaging in Applied Activities 92

Sustained Discussion and Problem Solving for 12th-Grade Struggling Mathematicians 94

An 8th-Grade Class Developing Math Concepts Through Problem-Based Activities 103

Summing Up 112

8 Envisionment Building in English 114

Thinking with and Through Language 114

Cognitive and Linguistic Aspects of English Learning 115

How a 9th-Grade English Class Explores Vocabulary and Content 117

Making Literary Comparisons in 12th-Grade English 121

Online Research in a Special Education Class 126

Summing Up 130

9 Envisionment Building Across Disciplines: Teachers Collaborating in a Professional Community 131

Coming Together 134

Year 1: Developing Problem-Based, Minds-On Activities 135

Year 2: Enhancing Critical Thinking Through Writing 137

Year 3: Learning and Thinking More Deeply in the Disciplines 148

Continuing Self-Study 151

Summing Up 153

10 Closing the Circle: The Role of Literacy in Disciplinary Knowledge 155

Constructive Envisionment Building 155

Building Knowledge and Gaining Higher Literacy 156

Technology as a Cognitive Playground for Disciplinary Literacy 158

Summing Up 158

References 161

Index 167

About the Author 175

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