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Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Review: The Critical Thinking Company, The Basics of Critical Thinking (TOS Review)

Critical Thinking

For this review we used The Basics of Critical Thinking by The Critical Thinking Co.  The Basics of Critical Thinking is a workbook designed for grades 4th-9th graders.

  3 The Basics of Critical Thinking_zpslotyt356

This workbook is filled with problem solving drills that helps expound on critical thinking skills.  Some of skills covered in this book are Fact v/s Opinion, Evaluating Evidence, Inferences, Venn Diagrams, Beliefs and Claims, etc…

My son is a 4th grader and being on the young side of the spectrum, he had some difficulty with some of the sections in this workbook.  He did however enjoy other parts, such as evaluating evidence.  Some assistance may be needed with  younger children in the age range.  It is possible that children younger than 4th grade or older than 9th could benefit from the workbook, depending on their level.  The Classical Method’s Logic Stage begins about 5th grade. I think this book might be better suited for my son next year, instead of this year.

2015-11-10 21.02.132015-11-10 21.02.30
(above: examples from the book)

There are example pages for each concept in the book to help explain how the exercise is to be done.  Some pages require more writing than other pages (which was something my son didn’t like, but that’s not unusual for him).  Some pages are circle the answer.  Reading is involved with each lesson.  As long as your 4th grader is reading on level, with an on level comprehension, the reading portion should not be difficult.   

My son did a forensic science unit with his cub scout group and this book was a great supplement to that.   Evaluating evidence can be a difficult task and The Critical Thinking Company claims that, “Students who successfully complete this book will have a fundamental set of critical thinking skills they can use their entire lives.”  I believe that to be true based on what I have seen in this book!  The skills introduced in this book could be beneficial even to adults.  Such as

• Advertising
• Agreements and Contracts
• Common Errors in Reasoning
• Arguments
• Valid and Invalid Arguments
• Fallacies
• Analogy Argument

to name a few!

We used this workbook 3-5 times a week, he would do a page or part of a page a day mostly as supplement to our regular curriculum activities.  This book would also be great for summer schooling, road tripping, or school on the go!  It is however, can stand alone as a critical thinking curriculum or be used as a supplement to many subjects, such as language arts, math and science.

I would definitely recommend this book, though some parts may be more suited for 5th grade +. 

This book along with many other Critical Thinking products are available online.They have lots of different materials, in a wide arrange of subjects and age ranges to choose from. Red Herring Mysteries Level 1 is one I think C would enjoy!  He is really into mystery books these days!

The Basics of Critical Thinking is $22.99 and is a consumable, physical product.

The crew reviewed several other products from The Critical Thinking Company, check them out by clicking below!  

The Critical Thinking Company Review
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