CRITICAL THINKING LESSON PLANS Update Sun Mar 22: Covid-19 is changing the way we teach. Check out our page on distance learning with ideas on how can you teach students who are not physically at school. By the way, this critical thinking lesson plan is important because with so much noise and focus on the Covid 19 pandemic, it can create a skewed view of the world. This lesson package helps give your students strategies to use logic and reason to form opinions and make decisions.
Teaching students HOW to think critically is important
We live in a world filled with news media and social media focus on sensational topics.
This is especially true today with new information constantly coming to us about Coronavirus (Covid-19)
It’s easy to get overwhelmed when we’re constantly surrounded with an overload of information.
It’s easy to get caught up and respond emotionally.
We all need to be able to think critically – whether we’re filtering through information on social media or listening to rumours on the school yard.
NOTE: This package does not contain any information, examples, or language specifically about the Coronavirus pandemic.
And, that’s a good thing because that makes that makes this lesson package timeless. You can use this lesson today within the context of Covid-19, or you can use it in the future when the next obstacle appears.
Also, we don’t want to give your students outdated information. Nor do we want to potentially trigger anxiety by hyper-focusing on Covid-19. So, this package includes other examples for your students to develop critical thinking strategies.
A lot of people might say that critical thinking skills are really just common sense.
But, as well all know from teaching in the classroom, there’s nothing common about common sense.
Sometimes, the news can give us a skewed view of the world.
Critical Thinking skills help students work to use logic and reason instead of emotion and fear when making decisions or forming opinions. This is a lesson students need, but don’t often realize they need.
Critical thinking lesson plans should help teachers empower students to make informed decisions independently.
We can do this by giving students specific strategies on how to think critically in multiple situations. Whether you are:
- dealing with fake news
- trying to make an opinion or decision
- trying to be fair
Teach students to have opinions based on high-quality information and to seek out opposing points of view to make an informed decision.
- Use criteria
- Be Full minded.
- Be Open minded
Students are often told to find different points of view on an issue or in a story. But, students don’t always recognize that simply identifying the missing point of view is not the same as figuring out what that missing point of view would say.
This lesson package helps students to recognize different aspects of their identity, points of view that might be different from theirs, and the need to figure out those viewpoints to help us make an informed decision.
We spent over 120 hours of research and lesson development in this product so you wouldn’t have to. You will have to spend a little bit of time going through the slides and handouts to tweak it to fit your specific needs.
YOU GET 5 WEEKS (24 days) of lessons to do with your class to help them think more critically by using strategies: USE CRITERIA, BE OPEN MINDED, BE FULL MINDED.
IN THE ZIPPED FILE, you get…
- 543 slides in POWERPOINT and GOOGLE SLIDE format
- SHORT RANGE PLAN PDF for 24 DIFFERENT lessons (approx 45 min per lesson)
- LOST at SEA activity (CRITERIA BASED thinking)
- THINKING about THINKING activity (The invisible gorilla, The invisible lens, Aspects of Identity)
- Should SEARCH ENGINES and ONLINE DICTIONARIES give us the same results? (Two online experiments exploring filter bubbles)
- Fake News activity – BREAKING NEWS examples on social media
- Fake News activity – The MONEY behind FAKE NEWS (How websites make money online and what this had to do with FAKE NEWS in the US election.)
- Fake News activity – LOCAL NEWS media and the Sinclair script from 6 different POINTS of VIEW. (Oh, not sure what the Sinclair script is? Sinclair Broadcast Group Sinclair made local news anchors recite the same script, word for word. Check out this video that went viral.)
- Vocabulary Building Graphic Organizer HANDOUT
- Critical Thinking Learning Skills SELF-EVALUATION handout
- Critical Thinking Review Assessment – What did you learn? (12 short answer questions and answer key)
If you want to teach CRITICAL THINKING SKILLS, we just saved you an incredible amount of prep work!
24 DAYS of Lessons in 5 WEEKS.
PART 1. EXPERIENCE
- DAY/LESSON 1 – Introduction / Lost at Sea (slides 1-35) – 45 MIN
- DAY/LESSON 2 – Lost at Sea continued (slides 36-80) – 50 MIN
- DAY/LESSON 3 – Thinking about Thinking (slides 81-102) 45 MIN
- DAY/LESSON 4 – Thinking about Thinking cont (slides 103-145) 50 MIN
- DAY/LESSON 5 – Thinking about Thinking cont (slides 146-170) 50 MIN
- DAY/LESSON 6 – Thinking about Thinking cont (slides 171-189) 45 MINUTES
- DAY/LESSON 7 – Sources of Information (slides 190-225) 50 MIN
- DAY/LESSON 8 – Online dictionary experiment (slides 226-233) 45 MINUTES
- DAY/LESSON 9 – Online dictionary experiment cont (slides 234-236) 40 MIN
- DAY/LESSON 10 – Search engine experiment (slides 237-276) 50 MIN
- DAY/LESSON 11 – Search engine experiment cont (slides 277-302) 45 MIN
- DAY/LESSON 12 – Search engine experiment cont (slides 303) 50 MIN
- DAY/LESSON 13 – Search engine experiment cont (slides 304-306) 40 MIN
- DAY/LESSON 14 – Fake News (slides 307-334) 50 MIN
- DAY/LESSON 15 – Fake News continued (slides 335-363) 45 MIN
- DAY/LESSON 16 – Fake News continued (slides 364-398) 55 MIN
- DAY/LESSON 17 – Fake News continued (slides 399-430) 50 MIN
- DAY/LESSON 18 – Fake News continued (slides 431-455) – 45 MIN
- DAY/LESSON 19 – Fake News continued (slides 456-492) – 50 MIN
PART 2. WATCH
- DAY/LESSON 20 – Part 2 Videos (slides 493-500) – 55 MIN
- DAY/LESSON 21 – Part 2 Videos continued (slides 501-509) – 50 MIN
- DAY/LESSON 22 – Part 2 Videos continued (slides 510-520) – 50 MIN
Part 3 UNDERSTAND
- DAY/LESSON 23 – Vocabulary Builder (slides 521-537) – 50 MIN
- DAY/LESSON 24 – Self Evaluation / Review – (slides 538-539) – 50 MIN
This is the good stuff. No, seriously. Check out the preview PDF to see everything that you’re getting.
This package is DEEPLY discounted for a limited time only.
- We will be distributing parts of this mega lesson in smaller “TASTE of CRITICAL THINKING” mini lessons.
- As we release the mini lessons, the price of this complete CRITICAL THINKING mega product will go up!
Here is a list of the TASTE of CRITICAL THINKING Mini Packages that will be released:
- Lost at Sea (Strategy: USING CRITERIA) – FREE
- Hidden Bias and Aspects of our Identity (Strategy: BEING OPEN MINDED) – $9.99
- Should Search Engines and Online Dictionaries give the same results? (Strategy: BEING FULL MINDED / MAKING INFORMED DECISIONS) – $9.99
- Fake News (Strategy: BEING FULL MINDED / POINTS OF VIEW) – $19.99
(OR, SAVE EVEN MORE MONEY and GET IT ALL! THIS PRODUCT IS INCLUDED IN A GROWING BUNDLE )
HEADS UP WARNING! YOU MAY WANT TO MODIFY SLIDES FOR YOUR SCHOOL REALITY
Everyone has a different school reality:
- Some of the examples we use in this resource may not be appropriate for all grades, school climates, and classroom realities.
- Sometimes, as much as we’d love to, we simply don’t have time to have our lessons derailed into teachable moments.
We tried to come up with different examples from various perspectives, but of course, we are human and have unconscious bias as well.
PLEASE ASK US YOUR QUESTIONS. THIS IS A FANTASTIC HIGH-INTEREST MEGA LESSON ON CRITICAL THINKING.
Here are a few of the slides that we wanted to give you a heads up about. There may be other slides that you may want to modify. We suggest going through the material to make sure everything fits your needs.
NOTE: All of our slideshow files and handouts can be modified.
- Slide 170 looks at various protected grounds in Canada as a way to help students brainstorm different groups of people. The slide discusses race, ethnic origin, colour, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity / expression, marital status, family status, disability, genetic characteristics and convictions for which a pardon has been granted or a record suspended.
- Slide 180 looks at possible answers for different aspects of identity. The slide lists: socio-economic status, nationality, language, colour, age, religion, orientation, gender, race, ability, and culture.
- Slide 320-323: Wikileaks release of alleged CIA documents showing CIA covert hacking program to listen through SMART TVs and other devices
- Slide 324-331: Death of Osama bin Laden which was reported on Twitter first.
- Slide 459: The title of article is “We’re journalists at a Sinclair news station. We’re pissed.”
- Slide 481: The title of article is “How I made a dumb video making fun of Sinclair Broadcasting and somehow started a media war”.
NOTE: YOU CAN MODIFY, DELETE, and EDIT ALL of the lessons, handouts, and presentations. WE PROVIDE POWERPOINT, WORD, and GOOGLE SLIDE formats SO YOU CAN CHANGE THINGS FOR YOUR CLASS.
Stay tuned as we update this page.
The Critical Thinking lesson package is heavily discounted on our TpT store page until this page is updated! Now’s the time to save time and money!
SAVE HOURS OF PREP WORK
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