Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Fourth Stop...Making Sense of Our World

The next stop on the Brain Train is all about critical thinking.  Critical thinking is when you are able to apply logic and reasoning to a situation or an idea that is new to you and make sense of the information that is thrown in your lap every day.  This skill is extremely important in helping you solve problems.  It is being able to have an open mind, being able to look at different possible answers to a problem and also being able to accept an answer that you may not quite have expected. 

The following exercises will make use of your branches iPad. You will need to download these free apps from iTunes. You have the option of participating in the group exercise, the individual exercise, or both.  You can get up to one hour for the group exercise and one hour for the individual exercise for a potential of two training hours.

Group Exercise

The following two apps are great for group exercises.  You can project them on a screen or wall or gather your group around an iPad, and work on them together.  Once you have completed the exercise, discuss the experience as a group.  Choose one app for a max of one hour of credit,  including game play and discussion. Upon completion, submit the participants using the form on Harriet.

Note: This is a group activity. Facilitator must fill out form and list all participants. 

Murder She Wrote

  1. As a group discuss the process of solving the puzzles.  For example:  How did you come about your answers?  Give reasons for your answers.  
  2. Why was it difficult or easy?

Individual Exercise

The following five apps are great for individual exercises.  Pick one or two apps to spend some time with.  Afterwards answer the five exercise questions on the form on Harriet.

Note: This is an individual activity. 

Cross Fingers
84 Logic Games
Brain Teaser Extreme
Sudoku by Optime
Cradle of Rome
  1. Were some of the puzzles easier for you than others?
  2. What kind of challenges did you face?  For example, could you process the questions quickly enough, or how soon were you able to detect the missing objects?
  3. Did you find that the further you went in the process that you were better able to focus on the exercise or did it just get harder?
  4. Do you already participate in a type of critical thinking exercise?  For example, do you do the weekly crossword puzzle, are you addicted to Sudoku?
  5. Take a look at the App store and find two more critical thinking exercises/games.  Keywords you can use are “critical thinking” or "sense making” or “brain teasers.”  What are the two you tried and state one reason why you liked or did not like it.
You will have until July 12th to complete one or both exercises.  You can earn credit for both types of exercises.