George Lucas Educational Foundation

Critical Thinking through Peer-to-Peer Online Deliberation

Critical Thinking through Peer-to-Peer Online Deliberation

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What tools do you use for teaching critical thinking in the classroom? It would be excellent to read about what works for you the comments below. I'm a civic entrepreneur in Charlottesville, VA. My passion is using structured online deliberation to get to the heart of complex issues. Over the past year, our team completed a major upgrade of our conversation mapping software, and we're finally ready to put it in the hands of educators to see what they can do. The software is free for classroom use in grades 7-12. Here are some interviews we've conducted with teachers and students on using a much earlier version of the software: The largest conversation we've hosted was with ASU and contained 1000+ comments on the grand challenges of engineering from just 35 students. So the software can handle very large, in-depth discussions. The format is 1) brainstorm 2) deliberate and 3) summarize. Here's an example conversation based on the jury deliberations from the 1957 classic American movie 12 Angry Men containing about 100 ideas: Please drop me a note if interested, and I look forward to hearing what tools you currently use in the comments below!

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Lucas Cioffi's picture
Lucas Cioffi
Civic Entrepreneur in Charlottesville, VA

Here's an updated link containing a short video for teachers about how to quickly get started hosting structured brainstorming and discussions in your classroom:

What tools do you currently use to teach critical thinking? It would be great to see some more suggestions in the comments below!

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