Inspiring Critical Thinking Skills Outside the Classroom
Like any dedicated parent, you have likely made the necessary sacrifices and put in the requisite effort to get your kids into the best school possible or done the most to maximize their experience with the school they currently attend. However, before you completely turn your kids’ educational development over to their teachers, ask yourself this question: Is there more that can be done to help my kids build upon their critical thinking skills while they are not in class?
It is a legitimate question and concern; in fact, information shared by Learning Solutions shows that, on average, people forget 50 percent of what has been communicated to them within the last hour, 70 percent within the last 24 hours, and 90 percent within the last week. That sobering statistic simply serves to hammer home the point that your children’s educational experiences simply cannot be limited to the classroom with no outside reinforcement.
Opportunities to Cultivate Critical Thinking Strategies
Emphasizing critical thinking at home does not require hours and hours of extra study of in-class curriculum; rather, there are plenty of opportunities, as well as resources that you can take advantage of, that allow kids to approach real-world scenarios from a critical perspective. Here are just a few:
- Household chores: You know the tasks you ask your kids to do around the house help prepare them to deal with future domestic as well as professional responsibilities; the trick is getting them to realize that. Ask them why they need to keep their rooms clean, do the dishes, or take out the trash. If they are complaining that the tasks are too difficult, encourage them to come up with solutions on how to make them easier to accomplish.
- Managing activities: Your children may also have a full slate of extracurricular activities outside of their scholastic pursuits. Like most parents, you probably take on the task of managing your kids’ schedules. Why not involve them in that? Doing so helps them learn how to solve the age-old problem that many adults still struggle with: managing time. By reviewing their schedules and comparing them to the activities they are involved with and those they might want to pursue, kids learn how to prioritize tasks and allocate the resources needed to accomplish their goals.
- Interpreting media: Movies, books, and television are typically viewed as distractions, yet who says they cannot offer teaching opportunities? Analyzing the messages delivered through popular media helps to develop a critical perspective. Encourage your children to really think about what they are reading or viewing and how the messages being portrayed can apply to contemporary subjects and their own lives.
- Educational programs outside of school: Who says that learning can only happen in school? We here at Best in Class Education Center offer a number of different programs to help build upon that which your kids are currently learning. We have enrichment programs designed specifically to help your kids master concepts and test preparation courses to help prepare them for college entrance exams.
Educational opportunities can be found in every facet of life; you simply need to recognize and take advantage of them. However, remember that you are not alone in your mission to help your children develop strong critical thinking strategies; we here at Best in Class Education Center can help you in your efforts. Whether it is through group instruction or individual tutoring sessions, our mission is to supplement the hard work you and your kids’ teachers are putting into their education. To learn more about the programs we offer, contact us today.