Consider the Evidence: Teaching Critical Thinking At the Dawn of The Common Core Era
Appropriate for Social Studies, History, and,
the Humanities Teachers from PK-12
Critical thinking: “What is it?” “Is it the Socratic Method?” “Is it something else?” Misconceptions abound when it comes to the definition of critical thinking.
Yet, we know critical thinking skills are demanded of students everywhere upon graduation and into the future. Common Core standards place a high level of accountability on teachers to help students understand critical thinking as they work with evidence in non-fiction text. This workshop is designed to assist teachers of social studies, history, and, the humanities from PK-12 teach these elusive skills through their content.
In this workshop, we will examine historical and literary sources, some supplied by the instructor and used as models, others derived from each participant’s classroom to be examined together for their use in teaching critical thinking. While the instructor will introduce some theory, much of our time will be spent adapting your content to teach critical thinking skills. This workshop is designed with intent to be practical; upon completion you will bring ‘plug-in’ material back to your classroom.
● Empower the teacher to empower students to be better critical thinkers to evaluate evidence.
● Examine the role of critical thinking in the 21st century school.
● Address critical thinking in the Common Core standards.
● Discuss text complexity and critical thinking.
● Learn to evaluate evidence for assertions, assumptions, reasoning, and value judgments.
● Analyze the role of the ‘argument’ as it applies to student reading, writing, and, research skills development.
● Generate ‘plug-in’ materials and lesson plans for ready use in your classroom
About the Instructor
Following undergraduate work at Boston College in history, and graduate programs in history teaching, curriculum & instruction, and educational leadership at Bridgewater State College (a Horace Mann ‘Normal’ school) and St. Michael’s College, I have spent the last 28 years working in three high schools and one technical center in two states. I have worked in large schools with diverse socio-economic demography, and I currently work in a small, high-performing/high expectations high school.
I have served as a teacher, teacher-leader, enrichment coordinator, director of curriculum, instruction, and assessment, and building principal. In addition, I have had the privilege to serve numerous professional committees, boards, and organizations at various organizational levels. I have conducted trainings and workshops in critical thinking, evaluation, and systemic school reform. Travels to India, South Korea and a dozen European countries on educational missions have provided me with perspective. I look forward to our work together.