The first quarter has come to and end and parent teacher conferences have passed! During the stretch between Halloween and Christmas break students can begin to lose motivation. One of the challenges teachers face every year is to push their students to dive deeper into content and think critically. Here are some exciting online resources to help capture student attention and encourage the thinkers in your classroom to engage in critical thinking the second half of first semester!
Media Breaker Studios
Inspired by The Daily Show, Media Breaker Studios is an online video editor that allows thinkers to critically comment on various media sources such as commercials and news stories. Students analyze these materials and have an opportunity to “speak back” against the harmful messages they are receiving. Thinkers can critique, challenge, and call out unfair representations of race, gender, class, and/or sexuality.
This International site provides a wealth of resources for both students and teachers. Their “Debatabase” provides thinkers with over 1,400 debate topics focusing on international issues. The debate topic is described, arguments for both sides presented, and then thinkers can vote for a side. The site also includes helpful tips and articles for educators to implement and teach debate in their classrooms.
Unless you’ve spent the past few years buried under a pile of paperwork, you’ve probably seen a Ted talk! But did you know that Ted Ed has a huge section of high-interest videos and lessons dedicated to critical thinking? These short videos are perfect for those awkward minutes when a lesson ends earlier than expected. When you find yourself with a little bit of extra time these 4-5 minute videos are perfect to pull up! They’ll help you maximize all of the time you have with your thinkers.
Padlet allows teachers to pose a question to their class and have students respond by posting comments on a digital pin board. Thinkers can respond anonymously, allowing more reluctant students to feel more comfortable sharing. Padlet is quick and easy to use and allows the teacher to immediately delete any comment that’s off topic or inappropriate!
Socrative is a site inspired by the idea of the Socrative Seminar. Students enter into their teacher’s online classroom. Thinkers’ responses to questions are shown in real-time, allowing for engaging classroom discussion and debate. The site also provides tools to create games, give quizzes, and can provide a quick exit ticket.
Teachers are busy and always pressed for time. Having helpful sites like these at your fingertips allow you to maximize your time. Work smarter not harder! By keeping critical thinking at the forefront of your planning, you can help your thinkers push themselves to a deeper level of thinking and analysis!
To learn how your school or organization can adopt thinkLaw’s standards-aligned program that helps educators teach critical thinking to all students, please click here to schedule a time to speak with someone on the thinkLaw team, call us now at (702) 318-7512 or join us on our next webinar; Thinking Like a Lawyer: Powerful Strategies to Teach Critical Thinking to All Students