How to Promote Critical Thinking in Kids

June 16, 2021 / Parent Resources

How well does your child respond to complex problems? When you encourage children to think critically, you teach them to solve problems and take in new information. We hope to develop your child’s critical thinking in the following ways:

Always Ask “How” and “Why”

For example, beyond asking your child “what do you think is the cause of global warming?”, follow it up with “how can you solve this problem?” and “why exactly will this be a problem in the long run?” This can teach them to have more flexible minds. Make sure that they’re always questioning things. Sometimes kids might be hesitant to ask questions because they feel like they might be shot down. Help them see that it’s always great to be inquisitive.

Let Them Defend Their Answers

Find out where they received their answers from. Ask them “how do you know this?”. This will make them see that they must logically try to back up their answers. It will teach them to assess themselves and reflect on their earlier statements.

Teach Them to Look at Different Perspectives

After you ask them the “what”, “how”, and “why”, make sure to also ask them questions like “how do you think this might impact X, Y, and Z?” This will help them prioritize the concerns of others too and come up with ways to address others’ perspectives. Perspective-taking is, after all, an essential part of critical thinking.

Finally, Ask Them How They’d Solve the Problem

Encourage your kids to look at different approaches to solve the problem. You both could brainstorm together if they’re finding it difficult to do it on their own. This 4-step approach to critical thinking can be taught early on so that your kids grow up to be thoughtful and self-confident.

Osmo’s interactive learning games for kids, too, help promote critical thinking in your children. Plus, each game encourages them to learn independently and at their own pace through hands-on play!