Thursday, 22 November 2012

Critical Thinking Skills for Kids

In the modern society, information is readily accessible especially through the World Wide Web and media. For this reason, it is paramount for teachers and parents need to take responsibility of teaching critical thinking skills to children. Critical thinking skills for kids will help them stop being passive receptors to actively participating in the process of receiving information.
When teaching critical thinking skills to children, teachers and parents should include the following in their rubric of critical thinking skills for kids:
·         Getting knowledge/information
Assist children to build their body of knowledge from a tender age. You do this by teaching them the names of common things such as animals, colors  birds etc. Teaching critical
thinking skills in this case includes helping children to recall by asking questions.
·         Comprehending 
Comprehending requires helping children to understand the meaning of information at hand. As part of critical thinking skills for kids, comprehension helps children to translate the information presented into meaningful facts. The best way to teach comprehension skills is through asking them to describe.
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·         Application
Once they are able to translate the information into meaning facts, children need to know how to apply it. Application involves using the information learnt to provide a solution to a new situation. Through achieving this when you are teaching critical thinking skills to children, you improve their capacity to take in new knowledge.
·         Analysis
Analysis encourages children to ask questions before settling for a position. If, for example, they say one thing is better than the other, analysis skills require them to say why it is better. They should justify any option taken. Generally, a critical thinker should cultivate the art of explaining; not just saying something is good or bad.
·         Evaluation
When teaching critical thinking skills to children, help them internalize evaluation skills through writing summaries.  Writing a summary will task them to differentiate between what is important and what is not. They may not necessarily get it right, but at the end of the lesson they must learn something.
It is your responsibility as a teacher or parent to understand the child. Know what he/she is good at or otherwise, and devise strategies for improving it. Realize that the ability of kids to think critically at an early age is reflected in their advanced stages of learning. Use the most suitable approach for teaching critical thinking skills for kids in order to get the best.

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