“I get it.” “I know.” “I understand.”
These are typical responses our students might give when asked about a topic being taught in school.
Saying we “understand” something can mean a variety of things. It could just mean the topic sounds familiar, but it could also mean you are so well versed in the subject that you could teach it to another person. This is because subjects can be understood at various levels.
By engaging higher order thinking skills, we ensure that our students learn at the deepest levels and therefore remember the information better in the future.
This taxonomy was originally developed in the 1950’s by Benjamin S. Bloom and other educational psychologists. It was then updated in the 1990’s by Lorin Anderson and others.
The taxonomy’s purpose is to classify what educators want their students to know, with the expectations arranged from simple to complex levels of thinking.
The lowest level requires simple recall or recognition of facts. The levels move from concrete thinking to abstract thinking up to the highest order, which is classified as creating. The levels also indicate different degrees of long-term understanding.
Using the taxonomy, we can see that a student can “know” about a topic at different levels. Many exams ask questions at the lower levels of remembering, understanding, and applying. However, students can increase their memory of the subject by doing activities from the higher levels of the taxonomy.
Using Bloom’s Taxonomy in Educational Coaching
The goal of Educational Coaching is teaching students how to learn.
One of the ways we do that is by introducing Bloom’s Taxonomy and incorporating the various levels during coaching sessions. Students become more aware of their learning and recognize how to adapt their studying to reach the highest levels of understanding.