The concept of “critical thinking” is one that has taken the classroom and the workplace by storm. It is defined as a person’s ability to objectively analyze information and come to a reasoned conclusion or judgement. Many of the elements of the critical thinking process can be taught in order to improve one’s decision making. They include such skills as information seeking, analysis, and logical reasoning, among others.
On a recent early Monday morning discussion group at Perry Wellness Center, certified peer specialist Scott Giles introduced the concept of critical thinking to a group of 22 peers. Using audiovisuals to vividly punctuate his points, he challenged the group to examined the process of thinking both creatively and logically. For example, Scott flashed incomplete syllables on an overhead screen and asked peers to call out the completed words or phrases. Participation was enthusiastic, as peers called out their predications.
After the group, Scott noted that such a lively group makes people actually think more. “The brain is like a muscle,” he explained. “The more you use it, the stronger it becomes.” Research has shown that exercising the brain through word play improves verbal skills and even delays the onset of Alzheimer’s disease.
In the photo above, Scott Giles, CPS, leads Monday morning discussion group.