Download your free copy of the Atlas Mission — the ultimate learning game for kids. Explaining critical thinking to my preschooler by using fancy words and a vocabulary way out of his reach would only cause us both to tear our hair out. After all, the definition of critical thinking can be complicated for even an adult to understand: It has to do with the process of observing, applying and evaluating information. In other words, critical thinking is how you learn from interpreting and experiencing the world around you. Although the terminology seems daunting at first, there are some simple techniques you can use to explain critical thinking to your kiddo who needs these abilities to interpret this fast-paced world.
How to Explain Critical Thinking to a Child
Cognitive Development in 8- to Year-Olds | Scholastic | Parents
Critical thinking requires skill at analyzing the reliability and validity of information, as well as the attitude or disposition to do so. A critical thinker does not necessarily have a negative attitude in the everyday sense of constantly criticizing someone or something. Last but not least , the critical thinker can apply these habits of mind in more than one realm of life or knowledge. With such a broad definition, it is not surprising that educators have suggested a variety of specific cognitive skills as contributing to critical thinking.
Cognitive Development in 11-13 Year Olds
Around the age of 11 or 12, children learn to think about abstract concepts. They complete what Piaget termed the concrete operational period and enter the formal operation period. The hallmark achievements of concrete operations is that children display logical thinking, can seriate arrange in a series without trial and error, are able to conserve number, mass, and volume, and demonstrate a more strategic and methodical approach to problems.
Here are some amazing critical thinking activities that you can do with your students. You'll find even more critical thinking games in our most popular book, The Critical Thinking Companion. Albert Einstein once said that if given an hour to solve a problem, he would spend five minutes on the solution and the rest of that hour defining the problem.