Critical thinking activities to take your students’ critical thinking skills and social emotional learning to the next level. Teach them to address their own flawed thinking by learning more about the biases that affect us all.
With these informative and engaging lessons on cognitive bias, your students will begin to answer fascinating questions about the way that the human brain works.
—Why is it that when people are faced with evidence that disputes already held beliefs, they actually become more convinced that their beliefs are correct?
—How do our brains that were evolved to succeed in a hunter-gatherer world make sense of the complicated information that they receive every day?
—Why are smart people often victims of fake news?
—Why do people make irrational decisions?
If your goal is to open your students’ minds, to get them to think critically, to help them become more receptive to new ideas, or to show them the importance of examining the evidence before jumping to conclusions, you’ll need this resource.
Students start off with a fun quiz to “catch” them in one of the common cognitive biases. After that, they’ll move on to two different entertaining videos, an informative and challenging non-fiction passage, and a close reading of a poem that they’ll see in a totally new light.
This mini unit would be a great way to start an ELA unit on The Hunger Games, Animal Farm, 1984, Slaughterhouse Five, Brave New World, The Handmaiden’s Tale, Night, The Things They Carried, or a unit on dystopian novels, war or propaganda, or literature that deals with why people are lead to believe dangerous truths.
This unit would be a great way to start a science unit that might be controversial to some students, such as a unit on climate change, evolution, or vaccines.
Of course, it would also make a great addition to any social studies class.
It would be a great way to start a history unit on any period in time when people were lead to make dangerous and irrational decisions, when they were swayed by propaganda, or when seemingly rational people made irrational choices. It could even be used to look at some the baffling problems facing our country today.
These plans are ready to go with minimal prep on your part. Engage your students with these innovative, challenging, and accessible lessons tomorrow.