Teaching critical thinking: The first step is to pause and reflect

© 2021 Gwen Dewar, all rights reserved Why do we fall for fallacies? Why do we get duped by lies? It isn’t because we lack brain power, and it isn’t because we are helpless to overcome our own biases. Instead, what’s really crucial is whether we take the time to pause and reflect — to consciously Read More »

Critical thinking in children: Are we teaching our kids to be dumb?

© 2008 – 2019 Gwen Dewar, Ph.D., all rights reserved In his review of the research, Stephen Norris notes that critical thinking in children is uncommon: “Most students do not score well on tests that measure ability to recognize assumptions, evaluate arguments, and appraise inferences” (Norris 1985). Why is critical thinking so difficult? Some argue Read More »

Teaching critical thinking: An evidence-based guide

© 2009-2012 Gwen Dewar, Ph.D., all rights reserved Teaching critical thinking? You might wonder if kids will work it out for themselves. After all, lots of smart people have managed to think logically without formal instruction in logic. Moreover, studies show that kids become better learners when they are forced to explain how they solve Read More »

Debate lessons improve critical thinking skills

© 2011 Gwen Dewar, Ph.D., all rights reserved Kids benefit when we teach them critical thinking skills. What’s the best way to do it? Studies suggest that explicit lessons in logic and reasoning are effective, so much so that they may actually improve a child’s IQ. But few kids encounter such lessons, even in high Read More »