The Illinois Board of Higher Education (IBHE) recently awarded Saint Xavier University’s School of Education with a $296,966 grant to train Chicago Public School elementary teachers how to more effectively help students learn critical thinking skills.
The IBHE grant will fund the “Developing 21st Century Critical Thinking Skills” program, which focuses on educating teachers to develop young children’s cognitive skills such as self-regulation, attention, reasoning, problem solving and fine motor skills. Additionally, it trains teachers to assess the development of concepts such as spatial relationships, numbers and weights.
“It is crucial that teachers understand how important it is for students in the 21st century to learn how to think critically and become accomplished learners in math, science, literacy, and all subjects that impact their lives,” said SXU School of Education Dean Beverly Gulley.
SXU faculty members, led by Assistant Professor and Project Director Mary Bell, will mentor teachers at Blaine Elementary School, Brenneman Elementary School, DeWitt Clinton Elementary School and Joseph Stockton Elementary School. The training will primarily focus on kindergarten through second grade teachers.
“This program will be excellent in terms of serving the larger educational community and improving its quality, providing valuable experience and information to our faculty, and strengthening our ties with the Chicago Public School system,” Bell said.
This is SXU’s second year of participation in this three-year program. The first year focused on math, this year focuses on literacy, and next year will focus on science.
For more information, please contact the School of Education at 773-298-3200.