Thinking Schools

What is a Thinking School?

This year, is the launch of our family of schools to becoming a community of Thinking Schools. As part of this process, each school will be working towards fulfilling all of the criteria to be accredited as a Thinking School so that our schools are considered Centres of Excellence with regard to cognitive education by the University of Exeter.

A Thinking School is one that is dedicated to cognitive education; to ensuring that any child that attends one of our schools is supported to become independent thinkers.

A Thinking School is an educational community in which all members share a common commitment to giving regular careful thought to everything that takes place. This will involve both children and staff learning how to think reflectively, critically and creatively, and to employing these skills and techniques in the co-construction of a meaningful curriculum and associated activities. Successful outcomes will be reflected in children's development across a wide range of abilities demonstrating independent and co-operative learning skills, high levels of achievement and both enjoyment and satisfaction in learning. Benefits will be shown in ways in which all members of the community interact with and show consideration for each other and in the positive psychological well-being of both children and staff.

Part of this process includes the introduction of key strategies. Children will be introduced to:

  • De Bono Six Thinking Hats
  • Hyerle Thinking Maps

The six thinking hats are a colour coded way to demonstrate different ways children can tackle questions whilst providing them with a scaffold to problem solve, explore ideas and articulate their thought processes.

de bono hats

 Introduction of a Thinking Children School Council 

All matters discussed at School Council will utilise the De Bono Thinking Hats to aid discussion and identification of next steps. Children will be the key drivers to feedback and evaluate the introduction of thinking hats and thinking maps so that they can shape the process throughout the academic year onwards. When children are discussing matters, they should use Thinking Hats as a vehicle to aid further discussion and identify next steps.

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