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Critical Thinking

What Is It?

  • Engaging students in higher-order thinking including analyzing, synthesizing, and evaluating
  • Grounding thinking in logical and reasoned judgments based in evidence
  • Posing open-ended questions to students that often begin with How and Why
  • Creating an inquiry-friendly environment that creates frequent opportunities for students to ask and explore open-ended questions
  • Guiding students to think about their thinking


Create inquiry-driven classrooms with frequent opportunity to engage in higher-order questioning and thinking


Challenge ideas, identify bias, construct new thinking, analyze evidence and seek deep understanding  

How Can I Implement In The Classroom?

Use deep-level questions that have complex, open-ended answers

Explicitly teach students how to ask complex questions and consider the surface-level questions that are often a prerequisite to abstract understanding

Provide necessary scaffolding to support students in evaluating evidence, analyzing ideas, and synthesizing concepts

Require students to use specific, thorough evidence and academic vocabulary to support arguments




Classrooms In Action

Critical Thinking Strategies For The Classroom


Critical Thinking


Why Does It Work?

"In an age of ever-expanding information, rote learning cannot keep pace.  To thrive, students will need to acquire a flexible, entrepreneurial mindset that propels them to keep learning and adapting to change. Help students get ahead of the curve--and stay there--by providing meaningful and relevant learning opportunities that incorporate creative and critical 21st century thinking." 
                                                -Robert Marzano

Digital Tools That Work

Activities That Work