The Complexity of Thinking Together: The Emotional Challenges of the Socail Brain



I might not know;
I have to think in public;
I might be wrong;
I might be judged by others . . .
Thinking with others does not necessarily come easy for any of us.  We may want to think well with others and at the same time we may look at thinking well together with others as one of our own individual growth edges we want to address.   I suggest that addressing our own growth and development requires being committed to growing.  And while we intentionally work on our own growth we will also can benefit from accepting that we aren’t perfect and others might judge us in some unflattering way.
To nurture own own abilities to think interdependently Lipton and Wellman give us much to think about.  Hear are some of their observations:
“To be a community of thought means to think interdependently.
This complex exchange requires both cognitive and emotional energy and cognitive and emotional risk.
A community of thought shares an intellectual and emotional commons.
Like the village greens of old, groups gain sustenance and energy from shared pastures. These energy sources include systematic experimentation and complex problem solving. When groups meet, physically or virtually, they create and re-create this commons.
Collective thinking draws on the resources of individuals to produce ideas and insights, and to support and extend the production of ideas and insights of others.
This rich and deep collaboration comes with emotional challenges: I might not know; I have to think in public; I might be wrong; I might be judged by others.”

Creating Communities of Thought Skills, Tasks, and Practices by Laura Lipton & Bruce Wellman From:  The Power of the Social Brain: Teaching, Learning and Interdependent Thinking by Arthur L. Costa and Pat Wilson O’Leary, 2013, Teacher’s College Press, Page 62

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