Problem Solving And Critical Thinking Skills Essay

1283 WordsMay 10, 20116 Pages
Introduction The focus of this essay is to compare and contrast, two opinions on developing students' thinking abilities in the classroom. This essay will evaluate the arguments for both views, being firstly, developing problem solving skills and critical thinking skills which are transferable across all subject areas, and secondly, developing problem solving skills and critical thinking skills which are specific to a particular subject. Each argument will be supported through the use of examples. This essay will also evaluate the implications of such programs in the classroom and finally, draw a conclusion about which program the writer supports and reasons why. Specialised Programs Specialised programs are aimed to teach children a range of skills that can be used in any subject area. Examples of such programs are Edward DeBono's CoRT system, and Six Hat Thinking strategies which will be the basis for the first arguement. Six Thinking Hats is a strategy used extensively in the primary school to develop students' critical thinking and problem solving skills. Its use is based on the "assumption that students study best things which are in their immediate worlds and that authentic investigations more actively engage them than do artificial ones"(Jervis, 1998, p.2) and allows children to investigate problems using different perspectives through the wearing of different coloured hats. The hats provide a formal and convenient way to request a certain type of thinking from oneself or others, putting on the hat is a deliberate process which aims at switching the wearers focus (Carl, 1996, p.2). De Bono's CoRT system is an elaborate program which teaches 60 skills. Amongst these skills is a unit called Breadth which guides students to direct their thinking towards plus points, minus points, and interesting points of a new idea (PMI). It is within this unit

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