Creative/Critical Thinking: Essential Skills Richard M. Cash, Ed.D. www.nrichconsulting.com 952-447-7668 Creativity: The ability to solve problems or find solutions by thinking “outside the box.” There is no decisive definition of creativity, but we know it when we see it. As our world changes more rapidly each year, our children must be provided with the skills to develop their own creativity and creative thinking abilities. 7/16/2015 R. Cash, Ed.D. What is Creative Thinking? Bringing into being something which did not exist before. Coming up with new ideas/ theories/ formulas. An essential survival skill for this fast paced furious world. 7/16/2015 R. Cash, Ed.D. FLUENCY: The ability to generate many ideas. This skill requires students to tell what they know either through speaking, drawing, writing or acting. 7/16/2015 R. Cash, Ed.D. Putting Fluency to Work in Your Classroom: Brainstorming Generate as many ideas as possible. Work quickly. Add to other people’s ideas (piggybacking). Defer judgment until all ideas have been shared. List things that are…. 7/16/2015 R. Cash, Ed.D. Flexibility: Generating a wide range of ideas. Thinking of things in different ways helps students build perspectives they may overlook when trying to solve complex problems. 7/16/2015 R. Cash, Ed.D. Putting Flexibility to Work in Your Classroom Organize your fluency list in some logical way. Use _____ is a different way. Create a metaphor: Describe a person, place, thing or event as a metaphor (I.e. Bob is a loose cannon.). Seek out metaphors (Iron Curtain, computer virus, VW beetle). 7/16/2015 R. Cash, Ed.D. Originality: Unique, unusual and not thought of ideas. Development of this skill is an essential component of higher-level learning. 7/16/2015 R. Cash, Ed.D. Putting Originality to Work in Your Classroom What is the most unusual or novel occasion you can think of for writing a note or letter to a person? List/Create new ways to use… Add/Suggest/Combine____ to create new categories. (Synthesis & Evaluation) 7/16/2015 R. Cash, Ed.D. Elaboration: The process of providing extensive and extended details. When a student is pushed to “color in all the spaces” they will develop a more holistic sense for solution building. 7/16/2015 R. Cash, Ed.D. Putting Elaboration to Work in Your Classroom Discuss the many advantages of sending a note or letter to someone you care about or haven’t seen in a long time. Add details to a simple picture/story (i.e. What did the 3 pigs do the day before the story began?). Design a new classroom/school. 7/16/2015 R. Cash, Ed.D. CRITICAL THINKING: Reasonable, reflective thinking that is focused on deciding what to believe or do. The ability to think clearly and reason logically is a primary goal of education. 7/16/2015 R. Cash, Ed.D. Critical Thinking Strategies: Compare & contrast Sequence & prioritizing Analyzing arguments Relevance & Irrelevance Fact & opinion Reliable & unreliable sources Assumptions & generalizations Cause & effect Point of view Bias & stereotype Deduction & induction 7/16/2015 R. Cash, Ed.D. All students must pass the Basic Skills Tests. Positive PMI 7/16/2015 Negative R. Cash, Ed.D. Intriguing Consider All the Factors (CAF): When you have to choose or make a decision or just think about something, there are always many factors that you have to consider. If you leave out some of these factors, your choice may seem right at the time, but will later turn out to be wrong. When you are looking at other people’s thinking, you can try and see what factors they have left out. 7/16/2015 R. Cash, Ed.D. CAF at Work in Your Classroom What factors should you consider in designing a chair In deciding how to spend your vacation, what factors would you consider? A young couple is undecided whether to get married at once or wait. What factors should they be considering? Do a CAF on the factors of choosing a career. 7/16/2015 R. Cash, Ed.D. CoRT Thinking By: Edward DeBono http://www.edwdebono.com/index.html The purpose of thinking is not only to deal with problems but to make better use of what is available. The purpose of design is to put together known ingredients to create fresh value. Seven Critical Questioning Strategies Analogy: How is an apple like a house? Analysis of point of view: What else would account for the rise in crime? Who would benefit from your point of view? Incompletion: How would you end this story? Web Analysis: How extensive were the effects of 9/11? Hypothetical thinking: What if there were no rain this summer? What if the schools ran out of money? Reversal: What if Al Gore had become president? Application of different symbol systems: Act out this math problem. 7/16/2015 R. Cash, Ed.D. Resources: McLaughlin, M. & Vogt, M. (2000). Creativity and innovation in content area teaching. Christopher-Gorgon Publisher, Inc. Norwood, MA. 800-934-8322 Myers, R.E. (2001). Mind stretchers; Creative thinking extensions for the content areas. Prufrock Press Inc.Waco, Tx. 800-240-0333 Piirto, J. (1998). Understanding those who create. Gifted Psychology Press, Inc. Dayton, Ohio. 7/16/2015 R. Cash, Ed.D.