Event Details

Learn a variety of thinking routines and how to use them effectively in classrooms and other learning contexts to support deeper learning and thinking for students and to cultivate powerful and lasting thinking dispositions.


We all become more effective as learners when we become aware of our learning processes and learn to manage how we think and learn. Visible Thinking, a research-based approach developed by Project Zero and used across subjects and settings worldwide, has two goals: to deepen content learning and to cultivate students’ thinking skills and thinking dispositions.

This course explores three themes at the heart of Visible Thinking: thinking routines, thinking dispositions, and documentation of student thinking. Participants will explore relevant research, learn to integrate Visible Thinking into their curriculum and assessment, and try out practices with peers and in their own classrooms.

Course Details

This online course was originally developed by Project Zero’s Ron Ritchhart and, in 2015, was reorganized and revised by Shari Tishman & Jessica Ross, and, in 2021, was redesigned by Mark Church, a PZ collaborator, researcher and co-author of the seminal book, Making Thinking Visible, and the recent book, The Power of Making Thinking Visible.

Structure: The course begins with a one-week orientation, during which you will explore the online platform and get to know fellow members of the learning community. Six two-week content sessions follow, each with an average time commitment of approximately 2.5 hours per week, including a required, synchronous 60-90 minute team meeting once during the two week session. Throughout the course, educators will explore these core questions:

  • How can we make students’ and teachers’ thinking visible, and what value does that have for teaching and learning?
  • What kind of thinking is worth making routine in our learners and in ourselves in order to develop and deepen understanding?
  • How can thinking routines be used as tools and structures to foster thinking dispositions?

Participation: Course participation is team-based, which promotes a deeper and richer learning experience and will help you sustain your use of core Project Zero ideas after the course concludes. Members will collaborate on team assignments. Teams are required to meet face-to-face or virtually once every session.

Although the sessions are structured and coach-facilitated, all the online interactions in the course are asynchronous. You and your team members can decide when to work on the course materials as long as you submit the assignment(s) on or before the due dates.

Team members must be able to try out course ideas with students/learners in classrooms, either virtually or face-to-face, or other direct learning environments with students. If you are not currently working in a school or educational organization, you will need a regular classroom context or a consistent group of students with whom you can try out the ideas you are learning throughout the course.

What past participants are saying:

“When we began this course, I used to think that ‘time’ would be a big issue in introducing Visible Thinking routines in classroom. Now I think that we can accommodate VT routines in our busy classroom time to nurture critical-thinking education and get a better understanding of our existence as human thinkers.”


12th Grade IB Teacher, Brazil

“I appreciated the fact that this course built selected thinking routines into our learning so that we got a chance to experience first-hand how our own thinking was made visible. Through this invaluable process, I learned that it takes conscious effort to think, even for adults, and being able to go beyond the superficial does require a lot of guidance and consistent practice, which are exactly what these routines provide!”


4th - 6th Grade IB Teacher, Singapore

“Oftentimes as teachers, we are given curriculum or instructions to teach, without having the opportunity to evaluate or practice. This course, and working with my team, has allowed me the opportunity to thoughtfully consider my teaching practice for the better of students, and hopefully the whole school. In our group discussion during our final session, we reflected on how proud we are that teams are beginning to incorporate strategies we model into their unit planners and daily lessons, and the opportunity we have to really build upon this momentum.”


Kindergarten - 5th Grade Public School Teacher, United States

Course Designer & Instructor

Tina Blythe has been a researcher at Project Zero for nearly 30 years. She is part of Project Zero’s online learning leadership team and is the education chair of the Project Zero Classroom summer institute. She is also a Lecturer on Education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Central to her research and teaching are how to create and sustain learning environments that support understanding. Collaborative inquiry and the collaborative assessment of student and teacher work are key focuses of her work. She began her career as a middle and high school teacher, and she leads workshops and provides consultation for organizations and schools around the world. She is the author and co-author of a number of books and articles include Looking Together at Student Work, 3rd Ed. (Blythe, Allen, & Powell; Teachers College, 2015); Facilitating for Learning (Allen & Blythe; Teachers College, 2015); and The Facilitator's Book of Questions (Allen & Blythe; Teachers College, 2004). She is the lead author of The Teaching for Understanding Guide (Jossey-Bass, 1998), which has been translated into Spanish, Chinese, Swedish, and Georgian.

Mark Church works with schools throughout the world wishing to create cultures of thinking in their classrooms. He believes in the difference teachers can make for students when they strive to make thinking visible, valued, and actively promoted as part of the day-to-day experience of their learners. Mark encourages teachers to become students of their students, and more broadly, students of themselves and the choices they make to leverage the power of making thinking visible.

Mark is currently a consultant with Harvard Project Zero's Making Thinking Visible and Cultures of Thinking initiatives, drawing upon his own classroom teaching experience and from the perspectives he has gained working with educators throughout the world. Together with Ron Ritchhart, Mark is co-author of the book Making Thinking Visible: How to Promote Engagement, Understanding, and Independence for All Learners (Jossey-Bass, 2011) and The Power of Making Thinking Visible: Practices to Engage and Empower All Learners (Jossey-Bass, 2020).

Online Course Schedule

Please review the course schedule to ensure that you and your team will be able to participate fully in the course, taking into account your local holidays and vacations. Teams can plan ahead for scheduled holidays and vacations and need to coordinate those plans with their coach.

September 2022 Term Schedule

  • Session 1 (Orientation): Monday, September 19
  • Session 2: Monday, September 26
  • Session 3: Monday, October 10
  • Session 4: Monday, October 24
  • Session 5: Monday, November 7
  • Session 6: Monday, November 21
  • Session 7: Monday, December 5
  • Course closes: Sunday, December 18

February 2023 Term Schedule

  • Session 1 (Orientation): Monday, February 27
  • Session 2: Monday, March 6
  • Session 3: Monday, March 20
  • Session 4: Monday, April 3
  • Session 5: Monday, April 17
  • Session 6: Monday, May 1
  • Session 7: Monday, May 15
  • Course closes: Sunday, May 29

Who Should Participate

  • Teachers, Teacher Leaders, and School Administrators and Leaders
  • Museum Educators and educators working in informal learning environments
  • Facilitators of Pre-K to Adult Learning

Required Course Textbook

The following textbook is required for participants in this course, and is not included in the course tuition. The textbook is available for purchase on Amazon or through the publisher Jossey-Bass — in both paper and digital format.

  • Making Thinking Visible: How to Promote Engagement, Understanding, and Independence for All Learners. Ron Ritchhart, Mark Church, and Karin Morrison. (Jossey-Bass/Wiley, 2011)

Tuition, Discounts, and Scholarships

Tuition

  • For In-Depth Courses (6 sessions, 13 weeks), tuition is $615 per person registering as a member of a team, and $695 per person registering as an individual who will be placed (by Project Zero) on a virtual team.
  • For Mini Courses (4 sessions, 4 weeks), tuition is $295 per person registering as a member of a team, and $375 per person registering as an individual who will be placed (by Project Zero) on a virtual team.

Large Group Discount

For groups of 10 or more people registering for either the in-depth or the mini courses, discounts are available. Email pzlearn@gse.harvard.edu for details and registration instructions. Group discounts are not applied retroactively.

Scholarships

Scholarships are available for educators from qualifying organizations. For online courses (in-depth and mini courses) offered from September 2022 through June 2023, scholarships will cover approximately 70% of the tuition. Eligibility guidelines and the application link are below. Scholarship applications must be submitted and accepted prior to registration for the course. If you would like to apply for a scholarship, please do NOT register for the online course until you have completed the scholarship application and have been approved for scholarship. Those who register for the online course prior to applying for a scholarship will become ineligible for the scholarship. Please note: scholarships are limited and are assessed and awarded on a first come, first serve basis.

Eligibility guidelines: With generous support from the Saul Zaentz Charitable Foundation and many individual donations honoring Project Zero’s 50th anniversary in 2017, Project Zero is able to offer a limited number of professional learning scholarships to support a range of schools, districts, and organizations as well as a diverse group of educators. These scholarships aim to support teams of educators and individual educators working in under-resourced contexts and/or with historically marginalized students.

  • In the United States, public school educators working in schools with a free and reduced lunch rate of 25% or more OR educators working primarily with students who attend these schools.
  • Outside of the United States, educators whose schools or organizations serve 25% or more students whose families meet the country-defined standard for low-income.

Apply for a Scholarship

Registration

Register for the Online Course

Confirmation and Payment

Registration confirmations are sent automatically from the registration software. Please keep these emails as they include your receipt of payment for documentation as well as your confirmation number should you need to access your registration in the future.

Payments are accepted via credit card or invoice for payment by check or wire transfer. Confirmation of registration does not confirm full payment if participants selected to pay other than by a credit card. All required paperwork and payments must be completed (or evidence provided of payments in process) by the registration deadline. For participants whose required paperwork and/or payments are not finalized at the registration deadline, they will be removed from the course roster and placed on a wait list.

Deadline for Registration

For the MLV and VT in-depth courses starting September 19, 2022, the deadline for registration is Wednesday, August 31, 2022 at 11:59pm Boston Time.

For the MLV and VT in-depth courses starting February 27, 2023, the deadline for registration is Wednesday, February 15, 2023 at 11:59pm Boston Time.

Please note: Space is limited. The courses may fill prior to the registration deadline.

Refund Request and Participant Substitution Deadlines

Requests for refunds and participant substitutions for the in-depth course September 2022 term must be submitted by September 7, 2022, and for the February 2023 term by February 15, 2023, both at 11:59 Boston Time.

To request a refund, submit a participant substitution, or to ask questions, please email pzlearn@gse.harvard.edu.