There was a time when flying a kite meant learning to build one and what materials could be used and even that there needed to be a tail.
There was a time when "speech" and "debate" were special classes and in those classes, students learned to research, to not find facts only but to think of arguments and how to evaluate the information they found, and to find a few good reasons that supported their argument. Then they learned to consider counter arguments and to find disconfirming evidence or the merits for the opposing view, and then, find further evidence to counter those. Plus, they learned to document their findings and provide accurate attribution; and, just as important, not to plagiarize.
We need to help our children today:
- learn to pretend;
- to solve problems on their own and without Googling;
- to question and analyze what they hear and read and not take everything as truth just because they found it on the internet or because someone said it;
- to learn how to solve all sorts of problems and then test their results for evidence their answers are correct;
- to be able to present dual perspective arguments;
- to be able to find and discuss the costs and benefits of each position;
- to eventually be able to figure out what new data would help resolve a controversy.
We need to help our children learn how to not just survive but to lead or feel confident on selecting a leader using critical thinking.
© Is Critical Thinking Obsolete?
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houses built on the edge of ambivalence
where origami occupants’ dreams are
filed in loose-leaf gliders while plumped
breadcrumbs nick their interests when rivers rise, swell
bowler gods and kitchen goddesses
rally around a dark apostrophe
or a fire-starting catastrophe
like flies and bees ‘round freshly picked wedding bouquets
whether words squared and re-used in a scrabble game
by the photo-op holocaust without substance
or the punctuation with questionable content and leaky leaks
both entice the gods and goddesses with broadcasted-war decisions
will time lick it wings or slap them flat
against its ancient pendulum of a body
or will snakes in the grass and pigs’ ear purses
manage to reach insouciant, perilous, uncritical-thinker constituents