Critical thinking for achievement - Day 2

The second day of training for expert trainers of the new Critical Thinking for Achievement course, funded by the TLIF (the Teaching and Leadership Innovation Fund) took place two weekends ago in Sheffield. I've previously described the outline to the project, which I'm going to be involved with for the next year or so.

It involves colleagues from the GA and the Association for Science Education, and some consultants, teachers and educators who will form the team helping to reach hundreds of teachers by the end of the project if all goes well. My part in this is to target Cambridgeshire and Fenland, up into Lincolnshire and perhaps West Norfolk as well. Other colleagues will focus on other parts of the country.

Image: Alan Kinder - I'm in there if you look carefully....

Critical thinking is important for many subjects.
I remembered work I'd done before, adapted from Panicology - this is a book which includes a toolkit for being sceptical about what you see in the newspapers.

During the training Jo Coles tweeted out a few questions, and this led to some debate on Twitter about the relationship between Critical Thinking and the curriculum and knowledge.
Michael Fordham gave his perspective on the place of critical thinking within domains.

Jo has since written this blog post here.
It has been published on the Pupil Progress blog.

As she says at the end of the piece.
I would never advocate teaching critical thinking skills, or any skills, as a discrete discipline in isolation. So, ensure you embed these skills within the curriculum you would normally teach, just the same as you would intrinsically develop extended writing skills, SPaG, IT skills, decision-making, source analysis, etc. . The purpose is not to learn a skill, but to develop the ability to acquire more and richer knowledge and to be able to apply this knowledge to new contexts. The purpose, is to empower young people, to enable them to achieve and be successful beyond the exam hall.

And finally, here's a flyer for the courses which provides more information, including how you can sign up to get involved for free.
TLIF Flyer by GeoBlogs on Scribd