Big Ideas and Big Questions –
Approaches for Engaging Students in Higher-Level Thinking

with Catherine Little, Ph.D.

How do we build curriculum and instruction to ensure students engage with depth and complexity? How do we help them find meaning and connection in their learning experience? How do we make sure we aren’t the ones asking all the questions?

In this workshop, we will focus on ways of using big ideas, questioning strategies, and discourse practices to encourage meaning, depth, and rigor in student learning. We will explore specific strategies for engaging students in constructing meaning around big ideas, with applications across grade levels and subject areas. We will also focus on what we know about using questions to foster strong thinking and discourse in the classroom, and we will discuss ways of promoting reflection related to questioning practices and student discussion to differentiate instruction and add rigor to the curriculum.

CATHERINE LITTLE, Ph.D. is a Professor in Giftedness, Creativity, and Talent Development in the Department of Educational Psychology at the University of Connecticut. She received her MA and PhD in gifted education from William and Mary and worked in the Center for Gifted Education there prior to coming to UConn. Her research interests include professional learning, differentiation of curriculum and instruction for advanced learners, and classroom questioning practices. Dr. Little currently works as the Project Director for Project SPARK and Project LIFT, two Javits-funded initiatives focused on working with schools and teachers to recognize and respond to advanced academic potential in the early grades, particularly in students from underserved populations. She is a member of the NAGC Board of Directors.

EILA and PD Conference credit available.

TIMES: The KAGE Summer Virtual Workshop is Monday, June 14 from 9:00 am-3:30 pm CENTRAL TIME. There will be a lunch break.

COST: $90 for current KAGE members, or $120 if joining or renewing with registration (includes a complimentary KAGE membership). Contact the KAGE office if you are unsure about the status of your KAGE membership. 

Last update 03/26/2021