Our purpose should be to create critical thinkers
One of the most important purposes of education is to create critical thinkers. Critical thinkers can connect ideas, answer difficult questions, and make better decisions. In today’s society, there are many influences that shape our thoughts and ideas. Students who master their critical thinking skills will be able to differentiate between which influences will shape their personality and which influences will not. Critical thinking will also help students weigh potential consequences that could determine their role in society.
Why do we need critical thinkers?
We want our students to make informed decisions. Critical thinkers identify and evaluate evidence in order to make better-informed decisions. There are many benefits to developing critical thinking skills and this is why we need critical thinkers in our classrooms.
Making Better Decisions
Critical thinkers are able to make better decisions because they are able to process information in a more precise way. We make hundreds of decisions every day, and most of those decisions are made through our subconscious. Students who are critical thinkers are able to make better-informed decisions quickly because it’s something that is hardwired in. Critical thinking helps us sift through the massive amount of information that enters our brains every day.
Prepared for a Successful Career
Most, if not all careers, require critical thinking skills. Critical thinking helps us analyze, store, and process information. Students will be better prepared for their future careers if they have strong critical thinking skills.
Develop a Culture of Lifelong Learning
Critical thinkers are lifelong learners. From birth until death, life is a learning process. When students become lifelong learners, they are accepting the idea that the world is ever changing and the learning process never ceases. For each student, the education and learning experience may be different. Each student comes from a different background, a different family dynamic, with a different outlook on life. As educators, it is our responsibility to accept the task of shaping the minds of children and young adults. On the other hand, students also have a responsibility and commitment in the classroom. We want them to understand that their educational journey is not over when they walk out our doors, but it continues through the rest of their life. Enabling students to discover their talents and abilities is essential to generate a passion for knowledge.
How do teachers develop critical thinking skills?
Developing critical thinking skills requires educators to take a step back and think about their teaching strategies. In order to develop critical thinking skills, we need to facilitate rather than instruct. This allows students to depend more on each other and less on the teacher. Students should openly discuss their ideas. As teachers, we should facilitate the discussion by guiding students and encouraging them to evaluate their peers’ thoughts and ideas. Critical thinking skills can also be developed by answering questions at the top of Bloom’s Taxonomy chart; creating, evaluating, analyzing. The Basic’s of Critical Thinking is an excellent resource for teachers who would like to work on developing their student’s critical thinking skills.
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