ToK 11

Week of April 15

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
  • Paper last questions
  • Lecture/Discussion - Kant's deontological ethics

Spring paper draft - Due Wednesday;

PSA Assignment - Due May 3

Wednesday PSA Assignment - Due May 3
Friday
  • No School

Week of April 8

Date Agenda Homework
Monday

Finish utilitarian template - Wednesday;

Spring paper drafts - due Wednesday, April 17

Wednesday
  • Discuss Planning templates and general comments
  • Lecture/Discussion - Summary of Utilitarianism and introduction to deontological ethics
  • Kant reading activity (in small groups)

Kant template - due Friday;

Spring paper drafts - due Wednesday, April 17

Friday

Aristotle template - due Friday;

Spring paper drafts - due Wednesday, April 17

Week of April 1

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
  • Journal questions from presentation - add these to your annotation.
  • Lecture/Discussion - Relativism

Read and annotate Levinas article - Wenesday, April 3;

Spring essay planning template - April 3,

Spring essay draft - April 17,

Drafts returned - May 3,

Final essay due - May 10

Wednesday
  • Relativism smal group discussion

Spring essay planning template - April 3,

Spring essay draft - April 17,

Drafts returned - May 3,

Final essay due - May 10

Friday
  • Levinas discussion

Week of March 25

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
  • Ethical situations small group discussion
Teacher interview template - Due Friday
Wednesday
  • Complete ethics situation poll.
  • Whole class discussion on ethics situations
    • What standard/criteria did you use for each standard?
    • Does the standard used for each situation conflict the standard used in other situations?
    • Is there an objective conception of ethics that applies universally? If so, what might be its basis?

Teacher interview template - Due Friday;

Read and annotate relativism article. Then answer the question, can you think of actions that are right in one culture and wrong in others? Does this mean ethical relativism is right? - due Monday, April 1;

Read and annotate Levinas article - Wenesday, April 3

Friday Whole class discussion - ideas from teachers

Read and annotate relativism article. Then answer the question, can you think of actions that are right in one culture and wrong in others? Does this mean ethical relativism is right? - due Monday, April 1;

Read and annotate Levinas article - Wednesday, April 3

Week of March 18

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
  • Small group discussion on "The Dark Side of Emotional Intelligence"
Wednesday

Teacher interview - due Friday, March 29 (Happy Brexit day !);

Spring essay planning template - April 3,

Spring essay draft - April 17,

Drafts returned - May 3,

Final essay due - May 10

Friday
  • Journal - 1) What is ethics? Your answer should define ethics as an area of knowledge and provide an example that supports your definition, 2) Is ethics relative to the individual or the culture or, is ethics universal? Explain your answer.
  • Lecture/Discussion - Intro to AoKs and preview of the unit
  • Ethics PSA assignment

Week of March 11

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
  • Lecture/Discussion - Theories of emotion
Read and annotate "The Emoticon of your Face" - Wednesday
Wednesday Read and annotate Emotional Intelligence article - Friday
Friday
  • Lecture/Discussion - Emotional intelligence
Read and annotate teen emotional intelligence article - Monday, March 18

Week of March 4

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
  • Emotion small group discussion

Next steps journal #3 - due Wednesday;

Read and annotate Harkin - Friday

Wednesday
  • Wrapping up current events activity - small group discussion with group members from differing parts of the political spectrum
Read and annotate Harkin - Friday
Friday
  • Journal - In small groups - Do you agree with Harkin's assessment of how our society views emotion and why that view is wrong? What struck you most about the article
  • Discuss Harkin document
  • Read and annotate -" The Emoticon of Four Face" - time allowing
Read and annotate "The Emoticon of your Face" - Wednesday, March 13

Week of February 25

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
  • Journal: In your table groups 1) What knowledge questions arise from our discussion of reason? Remember the definition of a KQ: They focus not on knowledge, but on how knowledge is constructed and evaluated, they are not "right or wrong" questions and they are constructed using general rather than subject specific terms, 2) How might reason be connected to the topic for the spring paper? 3) How does reason impact our daily lives?
  • Correct HW and turn in packet
  • Discuss journal
  • Bronowski video (45:40) and article
  • Instead of a typical annotation, construct a one page response to the video and article that answers the question: What are the dangers of faith in the power of reason (you may explore the question itself).

Read an complete the assignment for the Bronowski article - due Wednesday;

Next steps issue 3 - due Wednesday, March 6

Wednesday
  • Video
  • Journal: Does Western society over emphasize reason? What are the dangers of over emphasizing reason - develop a specific example that is not related to the Bronowski video
  • Whole group discussion (moderated)
    • What is the argument that Bronowski is making? To what extent is it valid?
    • Is the importance of reason overemphasized in Western society? If so what are the specific consequences?
    • To what extent do we see evidence of the overemphasis of reason in the American educational system. Can you provide personal examples?
    • To what extent might the other WoKs be capable of correcting problems caused by the overemphasis of reason?
Next steps issue 3 - due Wednesday, March 6
Friday
  • No School

Week of February 18

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
  • No School
Wednesday
  • Complete problem 3 if you have not already done so
  • Review universal aff/neg proposition syllogisms
  • Correct problem 3
  • Lecture/Discussion - Graphing particular proposition syllogisms
  • Work time

Assess the validity of problems 1,2,4,5,6;

Next steps issue two - due Wednesday, February 27

Friday
  • Correct syllogism HW
  • Lecture/Discussion - Other means of assessing categorical syllogisms

Identify the formal fallacy for the two invalid syllogisms, then write two invalid syllogism of your own each of which commits a different formal fallacy. Demonstrate invalidity both by graphing and identifying the relevant fallacy

Next steps issue two - due Wednesday, February 27

Week of February 11

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
  • No School
Wednesday Next steps week two - issue template - due Wednesday, February 27
Friday Next steps week two - issue template - due Wednesday, February 27

Week of February 4

Date Agenda Homework
Monday

Informal fallacy practice - due Wednesday;

Group informal fallacy media assessment project - due Friday

Wednesday Group informal fallacy media assessment project - due Friday(Note - The group project should be submitted by your table groups of six. Only one project per table group.)
Friday
  • Induction project issues
  • Next steps - week two
  • Lecture/Discussion - Categorical syllogisms

Syllogism practice - pt. 1 - due Wednesday, February 13;

If you didn't turn in the Group informal fallacy media assessment project, it is due on Wednesday, February 13

Next steps week two - issue template - due Wednesday, February 20

Week of January 28

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
  • Finish inductive arguments Small group discussion
  • Lecture/Discussion - Assessing inductive arguments
Personal Media Inventory - Due Wednesday
Wednesday Next steps journal 1 - Due Monday, February 4
Friday Next steps journal 1 - Due Monday, February 4

Week of January 21

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
  • No School
Wednesday Personal media inventory - due Wednesday, January 30
Friday
  • No School

Week of January 14

Date Agenda Homework
Monday Personal media inventory - due Wednesday, January 30
Wednesday
  • Lecture discussion - Understanding the language of reason
Friday
  • Lecture/discussion - Translating a narrative argument into standard form
Translating narrative arguments into standard form assignment - Due Wednesday, January 23

Week of January 7

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
  • Fall grades - questions, corrections, etc due by Wednesday
  • New Groups
  • Spring paper - practice prescribed essay assignment:
    • "'One way to assure the health of a discipline is to nurture contrasting perspectives.' Discuss this claim.”
  • In small groups:
    • What words must be clearly defined to make sense of this topic?
    • Discuss and list examples that support the statement
    • Discuss and list examples that deny the statement
    • How does this topic relate to the WoKs?

Identify and bring to class an article from a legitimate source that you believe might help you to support an argument regarding the PT. Your annotation should discuss why the article is relevant to the PT and how it might be used to make your argument

Read and annotate (online due to embedded graphics) NPR article on Stanford study on the difficulty students have recognizing fake news- Due Friday

Wednesday
  • At your table groups - Briefly summarize your article and then explain how it might be a useful example for the spring paper.
  • PT Article discussion and brainstorm of ideas
  • Whole class brainstorm
    • Unpacking the topic - "'One way to assure the health of a discipline is to nurture contrasting perspectives.' Discuss this claim.”
    • Specific examples supporting the statement made in the PT
    • Specific example denying the statement made in the PT
  • NPR Article reading time
Read and annotate NPR article on Stanford study on the difficulty students have recognizing fake news- Due Friday
Friday
  • Split class discussion - SHEG study of student ability to identify fake news - What is the problem and what role does reason play in correcting the situation described by the article?
  • With the people sitting near you in the circle, prepare for the Socratic discussion by discussing the following issues:
    • What is the problem revealed by the study? What specific examples of the problem are provided in the article? Can you provide examples from your own experience (either personally or with people you know) that illustrate these problems?
    • In what specific ways does reason as a WoK provide solutions to these problems? What concrete examples of the use of reason would improve the situation described? What role should public education play in the facilitation of this solutions? Again, think about the solution in concrete terms illustrated with specific examples.
  • Ms. Herman and I will not verbally participate in this discussion but will act as recorders so we can discuss the issues raised in future classes.
  • Bonus time! 100% meaningful group participation - everyone receives 2 additional pp. 75% meaningful group participation - everyone receives 1 bonus pp. These bonuses are conditioned on the discussion continuing in a dynamic way to 7:50

Week of December 17

Date Agenda Homework
Monday Enjoy your time off!
Wednesday
  • No class
Friday
  • No School

Week of December 10

Date Agenda Homework
Monday • Complete the analysis of each speech described on the slides
• How is language used differently by each speaker?
• How are the other WoKs incorporated into persuasive language?
• Does persuasive language facilitate or hinder knowledge?
• What role does language play in a democracy? (think about this one) - Wednesday
Wednesday
  • Language as a tool of persuasion discussion (Discuss these questions with your group, then we will discuss them as a whole class)
    • Identification of best examples of rhetorical devices (brainstorm)
    • Analysis of rhetorical triangle focus for each speech
    • Each speech is persuasive in its own way. To what extent does the persuasion of each speech advance knowledge?
    • Why/how is the language used by public figures important to the health of American democracy?
  • Reading time (time allowing)
Read an annotate reason, science and shared reality article - Friday
Friday
  • Journal - What is the point of the article?
  • Lecture/Discussion - Introduction to reason
  • Whole class discussion - reason, science and shared reality
Monday's class meets in room A214 and A211 depending on which group you are in

Week of December 3

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
  • Table groups discuss and share articles
  • Choose article to share with the class and the one example of why Orwell might take issue with the writing in the article. Be prepared to provide a specific example from the article and a specific connection to Orwell's observations. Key: How does this article use language to obscure rather than facilitate knowledge.
  • Groups report out
Make a list of five slang words or phrases you commonly use. Then find someone that is at least twenty years older than you. Ask them for five slang words or phrases from their teenage years. Write down the words and their meanings - Due Wednesday
Wednesday
  • Slang small group discussion
Read and annotate Wittgenstein - How does the first Wittgenstein reading (from the Tractatus) differ from the second reading (from Philosophical Investigations) with regard to how words get their meaning?
Friday
  • Lecture/Discussion - Language and meaning

Week of November 26

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
  • Fall paper last Qs?
  • Katz video and handout
  • Small group discussion (cont.) Language, thought gender and violence

Fall paper final draft - due Wednesday

Read an annotate Orwell part 1 (to the asterisks) - Wednesday

Wednesday
  • Make a pile of your group's papers on your table. Please clip your draft to the back of your final version.
  • Small group discussion conclusion - Different languages different thoughts?
  • Orwell Reading time
Read an annotate Orwell part 2 (after the asterisks) - Friday
Friday
  • Lecture/Discussion - Orwell on language and the obstruction of thought
• Use the internet to find a news article or editorial or speech that illustrates some of the abuses to which Orwell refers
• Read the article and highlight and label the problems that Orwell might find with it.
• In a short paragraph, explain the dangers posed by the misuse of language in your chosen article.
• Be prepared to share the article and your critique of it with your group - due Monday

Week of November 12

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
  • No school
Wednesday
Friday

Week of November 5

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
Wednesday
  • Split class discussion
Friday
  • Rainne Organization link
  • Journal (in table groups): To what extent do you think in language? Without language, how would your conception of the world be different? If you speak a language other than English, are their concepts or ideas that are clearly Express in that language that are not capable of being expressed in the same way in English? Provide examples
  • Lecture/Discussion - Linguistic determinism and the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis
Read and annotate Deutscher article - due Wednesday

Week of October 29

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
  • Journal (In discussion with table groups): What are the essential characteristics of language? Why is not all communication language? What must be true of something for it to use language?
  • Lecture/Discussion/Debate/Brainstorm - The characteristics of language
 
Wednesday
  • Journal: What is the most important and essential characteristic of language?
  • Lecture/Discussion - The characteristics of language
  • Reading time - Descartes/Searle

Read and Annotate Descartes and Searle - Friday

 

Friday Read and annotate Chimp-language article - Done in class on Monday, November 5

Week of October 22

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
  • No School
Wednesday Fall paper draft - due Friday in hard copy
Friday
  • Collect fall paper drafts
  • Language opening activity - small group discussion

Week of October 15

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
  • Finish presentations
  • Loftus Reading time
Wednesday
  • Eyewitness activity
  • Picking Cotton
Friday
  • Lecture/Discussion on Flashbulb memory, trauma and cortisol
  • Discussion of Loftus, Picking Cotton and eyewitness (Wednesday 24)

Week of October 8

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
  • Illusion group project work time - computer lab
Wednesday
Friday Read and annotate Loftus article - Friday, October 19

Week of October 1

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
  • Lecture/Discussion - Problems of Perception: Illusions
Read and annotate Factors that influence perception article - Wednesday
Wednesday
  • Lecture/Discussion - Problems of Perception: Illusions
Friday
  • Lecture/Discussion - Problems of Perception: Illusions
  • Perceptual Illusion activity in the computer lab (instructions)
    • Your group will be assigned three illusions to investigate from this list.
    • Examine each illusion, discuss with your group and fill out the illusion template. On Wednesday, October 10, be prepared to present one of the illusions you investigated to the class using the guidelines described below. Presentations should:
    • Explain what the difference between appearance and reality, and what your group believes is the cause of this difference. Does this illusion fit into the categories we described, or is something else going on? Your explanation should deal with what we have described as the two walls between our understanding and the world.
    • Explain how and to what extent your illusion involves other WoKs?
    • Explain a knowledge question progression (KC-KQ1-KQ2) that arise from this illusion and then explain and discuss potential real world impacts (positive or negative) these knowledge questions might pose for at least one AoK.
    • Be between 3-6 minutes in length. Questions are encouraged after each presentation
    • Presentations are worth an annotation and participation points
  • Illusion group project work time - computer lab

Week of September 24

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
  • WoKs handout from IB ToK guide
  • Journal: What argument does 12 AM make about the relative merits of the Ways of Knowing? Is this argument justified?
  • 12 AM whole group discussion and brainstorm. Our goal here is to list as many specific examples from the film of the WoKs as we can, and to examine the argument the video makes about the ways of knowing.
Wednesday
  • How sense perception is defined in ToK
  • Journal/Table groups: What are the problems of perception demonstrated in 12AM? List three and explain what the cause of the problem is with each example
  • Lecture/Discussion - Introduction to the central problems of perception
Read and annotate Henriques (online only) for Friday
Friday
  • Henriques small group discussion
Computer lab time 10.5 and 10.8

Week of September 17

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
Wednesday
  • Watch 12AM
Completed notes template and large group discussion of 12AM and knowledge - Monday, September 24
Friday
  • Watch 12AM

Week of September 10

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
  • Artificial Intelligence
Read and annotate Post truth article - due Wednesday
Wednesday
  • Review T, t & (T)? positions on knowledge.
  • Debate preparation for Friday
    • Meet with your group based on perspective T, t, (T)? and number
    • With your group, brainstorm as many arguments as you can for why your position on knowledge is correct (everybody should record this). Everyone should take notes on the brainstorm and have the brainstorm handy during the debate. Use examples from the readings and specific examples from your experience in classes at THS. Make sure everyone in your group clearly understands the knowledge position you represent. Appoint on person from each side to track participation for their side.
    • Brainstorm as many critical questions for each opposing side as you can.
    • Prepare a 1-2 minute opening statement of the reasons for your position. Agree on which people in your group will deliver the opening statement
Friday
  • Triangular debate: Is knowledge possible?
    • Debate rules:
      • Arrange chairs in the smallest triangle you can make.
      • Appoint one person for each side of each triangle to track participation (just for their side).
      • Each side should make a 1-2 minute opening statement laying our their position. This statement can be delivered by more than one person on each side.
      • After openings, follow the rules for Socratic discussion (no raising hands, be mindful of others).
      • 2 speakers from one side may not speak in a row. .
      • Make every effort to respond directly to the arguments that have come before you - notes help!
      • Your goal is for everyone on your side to contribute at least once during the debate and for the Socratic portion of the debate to last until 35 after the hour.
      • Each side will have then have 5 minutes prep time to put together their closing arguments. Closing arguments should summarize why your side won and deal with major arguments against your position.
      • Bonus participation point for all in group if debate continues to 7:35
    • Vote with your feet! Debrief

Week of September 3

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
  • No school
Wednesday
  • In your groups, share your article and how and why you can demonstrate that the claim it makes is false.
  • After each group member has shared, discuss the patterns that emerge that warn us that a claim is potentially false. What should we look out for?
  • Choose one of the articles to share with the class and one of your observations regarding how to detect falsehood.
Friday
  • Journal - on your own, what is the difference between a factual statement and an opinion? Explain and provide an example.
  • Pew test - Is it factual or is it opinion?
  • Lecture/discussion - Differentiating fact v. opinion
  • Media examples
  • Debate assignment for next week (3 groups/24 per group/3 sides per group/7-8 per side) (formal opening (3 minutes)/question scrum (30 minutes)/formal closing (3 minutes) vote with your feet
Read and annotate - Can Computers think article - due Monday, September 10

Week of August 27

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
  • Journal: Questions from the presentation on the limits of shared knowledge:
    • Can we know a culture of which we are not a part?
    • Does knowledge of religion require belief in that religion?
    • Is all knowledge based on perspective or is there a “neutral view” from which knowledge claims can be objectively judged.
  • Lecture/Discussion - Justified, true belief and its problems
Read and annotate philosophical Skepticism article - due Friday
Wednesday
  • On Monday the class raised several great Knowledge questions - "Is a priori knowledge possible?" "To what extent is our imagination limited by our prior experience?" and "Is language a necessary component to rational thought?" Nicely done!
  • Lecture/Discussion - Justified, true belief and its problems (conclude)
  • Journal/table discussion: Is JTB the best definition for what it means to know? What strengths does this definition have and what does it leave out (think carefully about this)? Be prepared to share your thoughts.
Read and annotate philosophical Skepticism article - due Friday
Friday
  • Journal - With your group, answer the following questions regarding the philosophical skepticism article:
    • What is the difference between “ordinary” and “philosophical” skepticism?
    • What does Wittgenstein mean when he says “doubt occurs within the context of things undoubted?” Is he speaking of ordinary or philosophical skepticism with this statement?
    • How are the movies The Matrix and The Truman Show used to illustrate the difference between ordinary and philosophical skepticism?
    • In what cases is philosophical skepticism warranted?
  • Discuss Journal
  • Lecture/Discussion - Three approaches to knowledge
  • Post modernism readings
For Wednesday, identify three claims that are demonstrably false (examples susceptible to "ordinary skepticism") from sources on the internet. Choose the one that is the most "interesting" and print it. Then, identify a claim that illustrates "philosophical skepticism." For each source, explain how one would go about demonstrating its falsehood or, in the case of your PS example, why no such demonstration would be possible(50-100 words each).

Week of August 20

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
  • Journal: With your group, develop and write a KQ progression that emerges from our discussion of the "Allegory of the Cave" on Friday.
  • Lecture/Discussion - The theory of knowledge that emerges from Plato's "Allegory of the Cave"
  • Journal/Small group discussion of presentation questions
For Wednesday, bring a list of ten things you know. For each item, briefly indicate what the basis for your KC is. Try to make your list as diverse as you can.
Wednesday
  • Review your group responses to the questions posed at the end of class on Monday from the presentation- Discussion of Plato's Theory of knowledge.
  • In small groups, everyone should share the lists of what they know. As a group, discuss how you might construct 3-5 categories, based on the basis for each KC, into which all of your KC could be placed. Be prepared to share your categories.
  • Use the categorizing the basis for what we know template to record both your categories and the KC that fall within each
  • Discuss categorization of KC bases
Friday
  • Journal - See presentation
  • Lecture/Discussion - Personal (PK) v. Shared Knowledge (SK)
  • Discussion of PK v. SK questions
Read and annotate justified, true belief article - Due Monday, August 27

Week of August 13

Date Agenda Homework
Monday
  • Begin reading and annotating Miller article
  • Lecture/Discussion - Knowledge claims and Knowledge questions
  • Miller article reading time

Read and annotate Miller article - Due Wednesday;

Read and annotate Plato's "Allegory of the Cave" - due Friday

Wednesday Read and annotate Plato's "Allegory of the Cave" - due Friday
Friday
  • Socratic discussion of Plato's "Allegory of the Cave"
  • Small groups - 1) What is Plato's argument? 2) How does he support this argument? 3) Is this argument valid?
  • Large group - Are WE bound in a cave looking at shadows and thinking them real? To what extent does the Allegory describe us? Discuss this using concrete modern examples.
For Wednesday, bring a list of ten things you know. For each item, briefly indicate what the basis for your KC is. Try to make your list as diverse as you can.

Week of August 6

Date Agenda Homework
Monday Read and Annotate Dweck article - Wednesday
Wednesday
  • Day 2 -Ourselves
  • If your last names starts with A-L, form a group of 4-5 on the west side of the room. If your last name begins with M-Z, form a group of 4-5 on the east side of the room.
  • Discussions in ToK - Dialog not monologue, identify your self.
  • Discussion of Dweck article
    • Small groups/answer questions in brief form in your journal - What is Dweck's argument? How does she support this argument? How does this relate to your experience in school?
    • Large group - How should the ideas in this article shape the nature and methods of education in the US? How does this article relate to this class? To what extent do you agree or disagree with Dweck's argument? Does Tracy High and the IB program foster a growth mindset?
 
Friday
  • Journal - How did yesterday's discussion go? What went well and what might be improved?
  • Formalize small groups (4 or 5 people from your half of the alphabet)
  • Lecture/Discussion - Introduction to ToK
  • Syllabus
Read and annotate Plato's "Allegory of the Cave" - Friday, August 17