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Leading a Culture of Thinking

  • ISA 45 Sportlaan Amstelveen, NH, 1185 TB Netherlands (map)

Why come?

Dr. Ron Ritchhart, Principal Investigator for the Cultures of Thinking Project and Senior Research Associate at Harvard Graduate School of Education’s Project Zero, will lead this seminar which is suitable for teachers, assistants, administrators and school leaders across grade levels and subject areas. Ron’s research focuses on understanding and developing the kinds of thoughtful learning environments that foster powerful learning for both students and teachers.


  • 300 Euro for one day (register by 1 November, 2019)

Price including the Cultures of Thinking: Creating Places Where Thinking is Valued, Visible and Promoted workshop:

  • Early Bird Rate: 850 Euro (through September 6)

  • Standard Rate: 900 Euro (ends 1 November)

Workshop details

Who is it for?

This interactive workshop is designed for teachers, administrators and school leaders across grade levels and subject areas who are interested in supporting and developing their students as thinkers and learners. Participants will learn:

  • The eight keys to the development of group culture and how they can harness those to create a culture of thinking in their school or classroom.

  • How to use thinking routines in to support students learning, to foster thinking dispositions, and to make thinking visible.

  • How to foster effective classroom discussions through the use of language, questioning, and discourse.

Workshop goals

This one day course, following the two-day exploration of a Culture of Thinking, is designed for those interested in thinking more about how they can extend, grow, and support the learning at their schools.  This includes teacher leaders, mentors, coaches, and just general enthusiasts about these ideas. Participants may be anywhere in their journey about developing a culture of thinking from just starting out to more experienced.  We will examine tools, frameworks, and practices that the Cultures of Thinking project has developed to support the development of cultures of thinking at the school-wide level. This one-day session serves as an opportunity both to develop a deeper vision of Cultures of Thinking and to put in place structures for supporting professional conversations and teacher learning at the school.

A key principle of the Cultures of Thinking project is that for classrooms to be cultures of thinking for students, schools have to be cultures of thinking for teachers.  The COT Leadership Day is aimed at laying the groundwork for this development by exploring ways participants might build on and extend the professional learning culture that currently exists at their schools.  In the COT project, we see the most gains in student performance and school transformation when schools make the discussion of thinking, examination of student work, and the taking of risks in trying new teaching practices central to the work of the school.   This often demands that schools shift and change the types of conversations they have to better focus them on issues of teaching and learning than on issues of schooling.


Workshops start at 08:30. Coffee and a light breakfast will be served from 08:00. Workshops will finish by 16:00. Lunch, snacks and beverages throughout the day are provided.

The full schedule will be sent out to registered participants two weeks prior to the workshop.

Session leader


Ron Ritchhart

Senior Research Associate at Harvard Project Zero and Fellow at the University of Melbourne, Australia

Ron Ritchhart is a Senior Research Associate at Harvard Project Zero and Fellow at the University of Melbourne, Australia. His current research focuses on developing intellectual character, making thinking visible, and enhancing school and classroom culture. Ron’s research and writings, particularly his theory of Intellectual Character and his framework for understanding group culture, have informed the work of schools, museums, and organizations throughout the world. Ron’s widely acclaimed book, Making Thinking Visible, co-authored with Mark Church and Karin Morrison, has popularized the use of thinking routines worldwide. Ron currently directs the Worldwide Cultures of Thinking Project aimed at facilitating effective learning in classrooms, schools, and organizations. Bialik College in Melbourne Australia, Oakland County Schools in Michigan, and the International School of Amsterdam have been key partners in Ron’s research. This combination of private, public, and international schools have served as the prime sites for developing the core practices and school-based evidence that surround Cultures of Thinking. Ron’s forthcoming book, Creating Cultures of Thinking, couples the real classroom practice of teachers with whom he has worked with recent educational research on learning to illuminate how schools and classrooms can be transformed to develop the learners and thinkers we need for the 21st century.