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Critical thinking instruction in the elementary classroom

13 December 1994


The teaching of critical thinking skills in elementary school classrooms was the focus of this project. Teachers who were interested in critical thinking instructions from two Oregon schools of similar size and ranking r were observed and interviewed. This project discovered that most teachers who claimed to teach thinking skills did not do so, but more often taught using "the basics" with little regard for higher thinking skills . A smaller percentage of teachers who did teach critical thinking are more thoroughly described and discussed. These teacher's views of why critical thinking is not being taught in a more widespread manner are reviewed; conclusions of how influences immediately outside of education, such as business and government, hinder the teaching of thinking skills are analyzed, and ways for improving education by teaching thinking skills are discussed.


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