Prefabricated Critical Thinking: Can Rubrics and Thinking Co-Exist?
The paper on “Prefabricated Critical thinking” by Robert Boostrom seeks to reiterate the thematic question presented in this paper. Thus, the question of co-existence between thinking and rubrics is made visible through the analysis of the content presented by Boostrom with regard to the accountability-through-assessment movement among other learning and teaching theories. Apparently the main goal of the article was to reinstate the place of the movement in aligning curriculum to the legislative mandates, core standards, as well as the map, stipulated in the district curriculum. The article further makes it definite that rubrics can be defined as a lynch-pin of the alignment achieved after fully institutionalizing the accountability-through-assessment movement while thinking is a guided process that entails using the inert intellectual capabilities to discern between two or more given situations.
From the face value, there is a coexistence between rubric and thinking. This is because the failure of the process could easily result into the failure of the rubrics, as well. In the words of Boostrom, “…the chain breaks down at critical junctures, and in turn reformers are unable to label some teachers and schools successful….” (par.1) This in return forces the reformers of the education system to surrender on the agenda of pushing for reforms and thus the real meaning of conducting transformative education becomes a mirage. In my opinion, this statement is certified by the thought that rubrics specifies the educational significance of the outcomes before the educative encounter is made. Therefore, the rubric movement acts as a projector into the possibility that the change will succeed, since it argues that the naiveté engrosses into the education process is virtually endemic and so is thinking thus there apparently exists some form of coexistence between them.
Apart from supporting the ideas postulated by Boostrom in the article, I am opposed to his line of thought that seeks to convince the reader that a transformative education system is synonymous with informed rationality and thoughtfulness. In fact, the author adds that a transformation needs to be unpredictable so as to fill the learners with delight and surprise (par.2). The pun in this statement is meant to auger with the reality that prefabricated critical thinking is not potent in initiating and supporting reforms in the learning process. To me, this statement is filled with a pun of absurdity because, from experience, curriculum mapping is a continuous process that must be defined by a complete overhaul of the curriculum as opposed to making it unpredictable.
In fact, a prefabricated critical line of thought could be complementary to the attainment of a standard-based, rigorous, grade and content-level-aligned curriculum (par.44). By so doing, the students will become high achievers that will translate into a higher grading of the schools and consistent improvement on the changes will produce high performing schools. Therefore, I support that the students have to be prepared for change in the curriculum. Just the same way students joining colleges, schools, and career are prepared psychologically to handle tasks is the same way the students have to be nurtured into accepting and institutionalizing the new curriculum. From this provocative statement, a thoughtful reader can thus dissociate himself or herself from the messiness propagated by the disintegration of thinking and rubrics.
In conclusion, therefore, the benefits associated with rubrics supports its coexistence with the prefabricated critical thinking theory since both support the need for teachers to direct the thinking exhibited by the students by guiding them towards curriculum change. Without the two, then the learning process will be clouded.
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