Authentic Lessons for 21st Century Learning

I Think / We Think

K20 Center | Published: September 16th, 2020 by K20 Center


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I Think / We Think

This strategy can be used in a variety of ways to encourage students to think about and list their individual ideas on a topic and to record common ideas that surface during group share-out and discussion.

I Think / We Think


Students reflect on a prompt, writing down their thoughts on a table before grouping with their classmates to share what they wrote. After discussing the prompt with their classmates, students write their new, common understanding on the table as well.


  1. Students divide a piece of paper into two columns. The left-hand column is titled "I Think," and the right-hand column is titled "We think."

  2. Present students with a prompt and asked to reflect on the concept or topic presented by the prompt.

  3. Give students time to record their thoughts in the "I Think" column, leaving the "We think" column alone.

  4. When students are done recording their own thoughts, they select or are sorted into pairs or small groups to share what they recorded.

  5. After sharing with their partner or group, students record their common understanding in the "We think" column.

  6. This can be followed by a whole-class discussion (optional).

See also

Keeley, P. (2008). Science formative assessment: 75 practical strategies for linking assessment, instruction, and learning. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin, SAGE.