Develop Critical Thinking Skills

” Oshiro says there are two problems with this question — it can be answered with a quick web search, and being able to answer it gives people a false sense of security; it makes them feel like they know a topic, but their knowledge is superficial.At home, prompt your kid to answer questions such as “How exactly does X cause climate change? ” To answer, they’ll need to go beyond the bare facts and really think about a subject.

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To really develop your critical thinking skills, you may have to do some work on yourself!

This can mean changing some long-standing practices, behaviours, or beliefs, and it’s not always easy.

Nudge them to come up with a variety of approaches: What scientific solution could address cause X? This is about teaching them to think for themselves.

Your role is to direct their questions, listen and respond.

This post is part of TED’s “How to Be a Better Human” series, each of which contains a piece of helpful advice from someone in the TED community; browse through all the posts here.

We all want the young people in our lives to thrive, but there’s no clear consensus about what will best put them on the path to future success. Attain fluency in Mandarin, Spanish, Hindi and English?Thinking critically is the ability to analyze a concept objectively, considering the facts and differing perspectives to reach a sound, logical conclusion.The reason critical thinking is a skill—and not just an automatic thought process—is because most people naturally think “uncritically,” making decisions based on personal biases, self-interest, or irrational emotions.Let’s say your child is learning about climate change in school.Their teacher may ask them a question like “What are the main causes of climate change?Other great questions: “How will climate change affect where we live?” or “Why should our town in particular worry about climate change?Meanwhile, your kids “have to think about how they’re going to put this into digestible pieces for you to understand it,” says Oshiro.“It’s a great way to consolidate learning.” Critical thinking isn’t just for the young, of course. You can think of these dispositions as aspects of your personality – which may or may not be well-developed, but which you can work on over time – that are conducive to critical thinking. NUI Galway researchers have identified twelve critical thinking dispositions that you may find it helpful to consult as you work on developing self-awareness.


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