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Grinnell-Newburg CSD

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Resources to Support Construction of Knowledge


Skilled adults in diverse occupations and participating in civic life face the challenge of applying basic skills and knowledge to complex problems that are often novel or unique. To reach an adequate solution to new problems, the competent adult has to “construct” knowledge because these problems cannot be solved by routine use of information or skills previously learned. Such construction of knowledge involves organizing, interpreting, evaluating, or synthesizing prior knowledge to solve new problems. Teachers often think of these operations as higher order thinking skills. We contend, however, that successful construction of knowledge is best learned through a variety of experiences that call for this kind of cognitive work, not by explicitly teaching a set of discrete “thinking skills.”





  • Art Snacks - Publish artwork; receive feedback, guidance and mentoring
  • Digital Differentiation - Differentiate with technology to help students construct knowledge 
  • Digital Vaults - National Archives - Primary source historical documents that promote thinking skills 
  • Graphic Organizers - Graphic Organizers, Mind Maps and Concept Maps to organize information and thoughts 
  • Khan Academy - K-12 math, science and humanities videos; Conceptual maps help make connections 
  • LuLu - Publish student work 
  • Molecular Workbench - Visual and interactive science simulations - create and share simulations with collaborators 
  • Tag Galaxy - Explores relationships with words and gives visual images to show those relationships
  • WatchKnowLearn - 33,000+ educational videos to assist in construction of knowledge 
  • WikiSpaces - For Higher Order Thinking - Includes links for many Math sites 
  • WolframAlpha - Database that answers questions, does an analysis, and generates reports


Student Samples