Enhancing Thinking Routines with Mote

Mote: A Perfect Companion for Thinking Routines

Guest post from Mote Ambassador Leader R. Erin Comninaki

Engaging students and encouraging reflective thinking are crucial to effective teaching and learning. Thinking routines like the Compass Points Tuning Protocol are great when introducing new topics and exploring different perspectives and can be a great routine to incorporate into Back to School activities. Using Mote with the Compass Points Tuning Protocol amplifies student engagement by facilitating meaningful dialogue and active participation.

Why use this routine?

The Compass Points Tuning Protocol is designed to help students articulate their thinking at the beginning of a learning experience and spark student curiosity to motivate further exploration. It allows students to explore different perspectives, analyze various facets, and eventually form an opinion or take a stance. By incorporating Mote into this routine, teachers can foster deeper thinking and meaningful dialogue, propelling students toward more thoughtful and well-rounded evaluations.

When and where can I use it?

Thinking routines exist in all classrooms. The Compass Points Tuning Protocol, complemented by Mote, is a versatile tool that can be applied in various contexts. It works exceptionally well in exploring different sides of a proposition or idea before students take a stand or express an opinion. Whether considering a school dress code, rearranging classroom furniture, analyzing a character's decision in a book, or discussing a politician's proposed tax structure, this routine encourages students to examine and evaluate different perspectives critically. 

What are some tips for starting and using this routine?

Teachers should begin by modeling the routine with the entire class to launch the Compass Points Tuning Protocol with Mote effectively—recording responses where the whole class can see fosters collaboration and builds on collective ideas. One effective visual anchor is to use Google Slides and record responses in the appropriate directions: E (East), W (West), N (North), or S (South). It's often helpful for students to start by identifying positive aspects or exciting elements of the idea or proposition, followed by addressing concerns and knowledge gaps. After the initial group discussion, students can individually write down their stances or suggestions for moving forward. Furthermore, teachers can ask students to make an initial judgment or evaluation of the idea before employing the compass points routine and then reflect on how their thinking has evolved through the discussion. Integrating Mote into the Compass Points Tuning Protocol allows students to reflect and respond using their voices. This promotes metacognition as students articulate their concerns, share insights, or express gratitude during the Compass Points Tuning Protocol. Hearing their thoughts out loud through Mote's voice comments helps students develop self-awareness and a deeper understanding of their thinking processes.

💜EXTRA: Compass Points Tuning Protocol for Back to School

Combining Mote with the Compass Points Tuning Protocol empowers teachers to deepen student engagement, foster critical thinking, and enhance evaluative skills. By leveraging Mote's voice feedback capabilities, educators can facilitate rich discussions, capture diverse perspectives, and guide students toward thoughtful evaluations. The seamless integration of Mote with the Compass Points Tuning Protocol cultivates an inclusive and collaborative learning environment, empowering students to form well-rounded opinions and make informed decisions. Embrace the power of Mote and the Compass Points Tuning Protocol to propel your students toward meaningful engagement and reflective thinking.

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