My big question this morning: how do we teach, and learn, to think critically?
Not the surface-level fluff–but the hard questions, the wrestling with the trifecta of intellectual stagnation: cognitive dissonance, justification, and rationalization?
Do we need heroes/heroines?
What would happen…if…we…didn’t?
What if…we were good to each other, did no harm, and made our classrooms, lecture halls, and online spaces engaged and safe places to discuss questions and seek ideas and answers?
Consider and read this thread: keep track and curate the narratives you teach: by every figure, do a character study. We need to face and review the decisions of the past and reconcile and come to terms with our future.
Example: what if Ruth Hopkins didn’t follow this path? Discuss the narrative of Lincoln’s heroism and his great, grave flaws?
155 years ago today, the largest mass execution in U.S. history took place under the orders of Abraham Lincoln. On Dec 26, 1862, the day after Christmas, 38 Dakota warriors were hanged in Mankato, MN. #Dakota38 pic.twitter.com/N8gSmbZwUG
— Ruth H. Hopkins (@RuthHHopkins) December 26, 2017
But we don’t really teach critical thinking because that would cause a potential revolt to order.
This feels very big to me right now, and scary, but this is the gift I want to give my students most of all: the courage to question, and draw their own conclusions, and then have the mindfulness and mental flexibility to adjust those conclusions if necessity demands.
Now: that is a big idea. How to go about it?
Okay. Any ideas welcome.