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EMPOWERING STUDENTS BY IMPROVING CRITICAL THINKING SKILLS(USE AS GUIDE ONLY)
EMPOWERING STUDENTS BY IMPROVING CRITICAL THINKING SKILLS
The purpose of education is to prepare students to lead productive, fulfilling lives
(Laureate Education, 2009). To be effective in assisting students with achieving this goal, the
educator’s role is to help students to develop self-directedness and efficient and effective
thinking skills (Laureate Education, 2009). A self-directed individual is one who embodies the
principles of self-management, self-monitoring and self-modification. This paper will discuss
three ways in which educators can empower students by improving their critical thinking skills.
As an educator who has served across the private sector of the education system in the
Bahamas for over twenty-three years, I spent the last 8 years working with students of all ages
on a one – on – one basis. Since I began operating a tutoring center, working one-on-one with
students (grades 2 - 9) who were having challenges coping in the traditional classroom with a
goal of fostering the development of 21st century skills such as critical thinking, problem solving
and decision-making skills in our youth and a commitment to helping them to maximize their
learning potential, my concern grew as I encountered many students who presented with grave
difficulty when it came to critically and logically assessing and analyzing information. The
majority of the students seem not to have the ability to apply logical reasoning to solve problems
whether they relate to the discipline of Mathematics or Reading Comprehension. This concern
has lead me to conduct a research on how to improve critical thinking skills in my students.
Saiz and Rivas (2008) defines critical thinking as a process involving a search for
knowledge through reasoning skills, problem-solving and decision-making that will allow us to
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