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Critical Thinking Wheel Blooms Taxonomy

This post is sponsored by Mentoring Minds.  All thoughts and opinions are our own.

Recently we were introduced to the educational resource company Mentoring Minds.  The company has math and reading materials available for addressing Common Core State Standards.  However, our favorite resource is their Critical Thinking Wheel.  Check it out here:  Check it out below…

We think this little wheel will become one of your favorite lesson planning tools!  If you are a principal reading this review, we highly suggest you click over and purchase one for each of your teachers.  Why do we like it?  Well… this wheel will help teachers in their lesson planning because it will make it easier for them to develop critical thinking questions for their lessons.  So often we get stuck asking the same types of questions, this wheel will make it easier for you to move away from those go-to questions.  It uses Bloom’s Taxonomy as a base so we know that it will fit into many classrooms across the country.  Using Bloom’s Taxonomy as a resource in creating this wheel helps teachers focus on different levels of understanding that extend beyond memorization.

We are so in love with it that we created our own planner to accompany it. This planner is designed to be used as teachers are creating a unit of study.  Teachers will record key words they would like to focus on and their approach to addressing each section.  This planner will then be used as teachers put together their unit of study. Our planner was designed so that it can easily be used with any focus.  Combining our planning and the Critical Thinking Wheel will help you create a unit of study that requires higher order thinking.  You can download a copy of our planner here:  Critical Thinking Educator Wheel Planner.

In addition to the Critical Thinking Educator Wheel, there is also a Critical Thinking Student Wheel.  Check it out here:  We envision this being used in classrooms where students have been introduced to Bloom’s Taxonomy.  As part of classroom projects, students can use the Student Wheel to make sure they are addressing each section in the hierarchy.  You may have students use this planner if you are requiring them to touch upon each level during a project:  Critical Thinking Student Wheel Planner.

How would you use these wheels in your lesson planning or as part of your classroom instruction?  We would love to hear your ideas below!

Filed Under: Blog, Organization

249 Bloom’s Taxonomy Verbs For Critical Thinking

by TeachThought Staff

Bloom’s Taxonomy’s verbs–also know as power verbs or thinking verbs–are extraordinarily powerful instructional planning tools.

In fact, next to the concept of backwards-design and power standards, they are likely the most useful tool a teacher-as-learning-designer has access to. Why?

They can be used for curriculum mapping, assessment design, lesson planning, personalizing and differentiating learning, and almost any other “thing” a teacher–or student–has to do.

For example, if a standard asks students to infer and demonstrate an author’s position using evidence from the text, there’s a lot built into that kind of task. First a student has to be able to define what an “author’s position” is and what “evidence from the text” means (Knowledge-level). They’ll then need to be able to summarize that same text (Understanding-level), interpret and infer any arguments or positions (Analysis-level), evaluate inherent claims (Evaluation-level), and then write (Creation-level) a response that demonstrates their thinking.

Though the chart below reads left to right, it’s ideal to imagine it as a kind of incline, with Knowledge at the bottom, and Create at the top. You may not always need this kind of tool to “unpack” standards and identify a possible learning sequence, but it also works ideally as an assessment design tool. If students can consistently work with the topic in the columns to the right–designing, recommending, differentiating, comparing and contrasting, and so on, then they likely have a firm grasp on the material.

While we’ve shared Bloom’s Taxonomy posters posters before, the simplicity and clean design of the chart format make it a bit more functional–even useful to hand to the students themselves as a hole-punch-and-keep-it-in-your-journal-for-the-year kind of resource. It also makes a powerful self-directed learning tool. Start at the left, and, roughly, move right.

Looking to bring professional development for using Bloom’s taxonomy in your school? Contact us today.

249 Bloom’s Taxonomy Verbs For Critical Thinking