A quick review and practice. Because we use terms so loosely it is easy to confuse critical thinking with criticism. Criticism is usually about the person whereas critical thinking is about the process.
a. To get criticism out of the way, create your own simple definition of criticism.
b. When you talk about thinking, what do you mean? Take a minute or so to write down your definition of thinking. If you prefer, just look into the far distance and create a sentence two describing thinking. Formulate your definition in such a way that you could describe thinking to the next person.
c. Refine your definition to describe critical thinking.
d. What do you think are the characteristics of a good thinker?
During this week keep your ears open for criticism. Was it about the person and how he or she behaves? A good clue is that it included the word ‘you’. An example would be “You always …….”. Was it emotional? Did the criticism attack the individual?
Next time we will look at the contents of the critical thinking toolbox.