There is much that is been said throughout centuries in praise of critical thinking. We all encounter opportunities every day to engage in critical thinking while confronting a problem and making decisions. Everyone needs to think beforehand, to plan accordingly and solve problem. It is easy to find examples of critical thinking skills being applied, every day, in everyday life.
Critical thinking is evident in nearly everything we do. In fact, strong thinking is the common denominator of success globally. But critical thinking goes beyond just thinking clearly — it is also about thinking for yourself. Critical thinking goes beyond memorization, it encourages people to connect the dots between concepts, solve problems, think creatively, and apply knowledge in new ways. Despite the many myths that critical thinking skills are only relevant to subjects like science and math, the reality is that these skills are based on the evaluation and application of knowledge. They are not only vital for success in all subject areas, but everyday life as well.
Someone with critical thinking skills can think rationally and clearly about what they should or should not believe. They are capable of engaging in their own thoughts and reflecting in order to come to a well-informed decision. A critical thinker understands the connections between ideas, and is capable of constructing arguments based on facts, as well as finding mistakes in reasoning.
Critical thinking skills are an increasingly important element of education but teaching them can often be a challenge for teachers. Students are given the chance to answer when teachers ask questions in class, they think critically about what they have learned and what they believe to be accurate. When students are put in groups to work together and are forced to engage in discussion, this is also a great chance to expand their thinking and use their critical thinking skills.
For example, mathematics is a subject where students are constantly introduced to examples of deductive reasoning in the form of mathematical proofs. Teachers could use this opportunity to explicitly introduce students to principles of deductive reasoning or contrast deductive with inductive logic which is the fundamental mode of reasoning used in science.
Similarly, activities involving informational reading and argumentative writing provide ideal opportunities to introduce students in writing classes to logical arguments in which evidence in the form of premises of an argument leads to a conclusion and how those arguments can be tested for validity, soundness, strength, and weakness. By following these teachers encourage curiosity, enhance creativity, reinforce problem-solving ability, and fosters independence among students.
Critical thinking can be imbibed by encouraging students to ask questions, as it gives them a chance to apply what they have learned and build on prior knowledge. Working in groups involve cooperative learning that not only exposes students to the thought processes of their classmates, but it also expands their thinking and worldview by demonstrating that there is no one right way to approach a problem.
Incorporating different points of view involve exploring a concept from multiple perspectives while listening to and learning from others. Encouraging collaboration not only in groups, but along the lines of using technology to reach out to the global community.
Invest in technology would not be completed efficiently if the end goal doesn’t lead to students collaborating, thinking critically, and solving problems relevant to their world. Encouraging decision-making in the earlier stage of life will also make them self-reliant.
Exploring all options and thinking outside of the box before they come to any conclusions. Inspiring creativity, brainstorming, and looking at the Short-term and long-term consequences should be a way forward to sculpt a critical thinker in a student. Making Critical Thinking a priority by embracing and incorporating at the primary level is crucial. Students must be encouraged to trust their teachers to think and speak openly, and slowly setting an example to them to also trust in the goodness of their fellow learners. This encourages students to step up when fully engaged in purposeful projects. Students should be offered the Freedom to Learn on their own by encouraging Project-Based Learning. This will let them Solve real-world problems and gets kids out of the classroom and into the real world.
Most of our everyday thinking is uncritical. If we had to think deliberately about every single action such as breathing, for instance, we would not have any cognitive energy left for the important stuff. It is good that much of our thinking is automatic that we can run into problems, but we let our automatic mental processes govern important decisions.
Without critical thinking, it is easy for people to manipulate us and for all sorts of catastrophes to result. Even day to day, it is easy to get caught in pointless arguments or say meaningless things just because you failed to stop and think deliberately. critical thinking matters in higher education because students often adopt the wrong attitude to thinking about difficult questions by ignorant in certainty where they belief that there are definite, correct answers to all question, however, the answers to most meaningful questions are rarely straightforward.
Some students even choose to be naive in relativism, as they belief that there is no truth, and all arguments are equal. It allows you to formulate your own views and engage with material beyond a superficial level. However, with critical thinking they are more likely to craft worthy arguments and back them up. If they plan to go on to graduate school or pursue a PhD, critical thoughts are crucial. It will help the evaluate their own work. This leads to better grades academically and better habits of mind holistically.
Children learn in different ways and can come from vastly different backgrounds, and hence it is essential that future school teachers receive an education that helps them efficiently reach various types of students so they can learn to think critically and meet the challenges of life in this diverse, complex world. Encouraging habits like asking basic questions, questioning basic assumptions, trying to reverse things, or evaluating the existing evidence is all it takes to become a critical thinker. But most importantly remembering to think for oneself is the steppingstone to this wholesome personality. Learning to think critically is a lifelong journey, and there is always something more to learn.