Module 3



Module 3 - Reading

Lower-Order Thinking Skills

Traditionally, textbooks and other teaching materials consist of activities that require recall and memorization. Much of the thinking that learners are asked to do in schools involves these lower-level skills. Knowledge and comprehension are considered simple thinking tasks and do not necessarily engage learners in deep understanding and long-term retention. For example, the majority of tests require learners to simply recall information. Often the information is forgotten soon after the test.

While simple thinking tasks of this nature seem to have limited impact on the development of 21st century learning skills, such thinking still has its place in the development of higher order thinking. One has to engage with simpler questions and lower levels of thinking in order to provide background informatin and understanding for more complex thinking processes such as decision-making, problem solving and critical thinking.

Higher-Order Thinking Skills

21st century teaching and learning encourages learners to move beyond lower-order thinking to inventive, productive, and ethical thinking. This kind of thinking requires higher-order thinking skills, such as analysis, synthesis, metacognition, problem solving, and evaluation. Most educators agree that their learners are not as proficient at these kinds of thinking as they would like them to be. Often, the kinds of questions presented to learners can make a big difference in their levels of thinking.



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