Cultures of Thinking is a transformative approach to teaching and learning arising from the work of Dr. Ron Ritchhart and Project Zero colleagues at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. 

In 2016, Simon completed a series of nine interviews which collectively constitute an in-depth exploration of cultures of thinking pedagogy, with a practical focus on how these ideas might be implemented in schools and classrooms.

These nine interviews with educational commentator Colin Klupiec are now accessible by clicking on the links below.  Each interview is around 30 minutes in length, and serves as rich stimulus material for in-school study group meetings and professional learning communities.  Teacher-facilitators who draw on these podcasts often employ discussion protocols such as The 4 As or The Final Word to in order to facilitate stimulating conversation with colleagues.


You can also listen to these podcasts on your smart phone while you’re on the go.  Simply download ‘The Learning Capacity Podcast’ via your podcast app.

Cultures of Thinking

What is a culture of thinking?

What's the difference between doing thinking and becoming thinkers?

And why is Cultures of Thinking more than just a 'program for implementation'?

Expectations Cultural Forces

How do our EXPECTATIONS for children, rather than expectations of them, help shape a culture of thinking in our classrooms and schools?

Language Cultural Forces

In 1978, educator Lev Vygotsky explored the idea that children make sense of the world around them not only through their eyes but also through their speech.  In other words, 'it is not just seeing but acting that becomes informed by words.'


As educators, how might the LANGUAGE we use help children develop the disposition to be critical and creative thinkers?

Time Cultural Forces

Most teachers feel that there just isn't enough TIME in the school day.  This pressure makes it hard for some teachers to allow time for thinking, but making time for students to think actually facilitates faster coverage of the curriculum, since students develop more lasting understanding of content and become more engaged in their learning.


How might we become the master of time rather than its victim?

Modelling Cultural Forces

As teachers, how do we model who we are as thinkers and learners?  


What is the difference between a dispositional and a cognitive apprenticeship?


What impact might MODELLING have on helping students grow as critical and creative thinkers? 

Opportunities Cultural Forces

How might the replacement of low-level tasks with purposeful thinking OPPORTUNITIES be the single most productive and low-cost way of bumping up learning in schools?


What would it be like if there were no more worksheets to keep children busy?


How do great teachers create powerful learning opportunities, rich in thinking, and in service of developing deep, lasting understanding?

Routines Cultural Forces

What are thinking ROUTINES?


How are they different to activities?


What's the difference between management, instructional and thinking routines?


And how might the use of thinking routines support the growth of a culture of thinking?

Interactions Cultural Forces

It is in the INTERACTIONS between teachers and students that the seeds of a culture of thinking are sown.

What is the role of listening and questioning in building positive classroom interactions?

And what has ice cream got to do with this?

Environment Cultural Forces

How might the physical ENVIRONMENT function as the body language of an organisation?

What's the role of classroom layout in building a culture of thinking?

And why might making thinking visible be important?

Copyright 2018 Simon Brooks