Raising the Bar in Mathematics: Empowering critical and creative thinking skills
Dr Fong, Singapore Maths specialist, founder of BrainBuilder learning centres and author of Singapore Maths books such as Inspire Maths and My Pals are Here, was invited to the United Kingdom back in June to give the keynote in front of UK’s education experts, including Her Majesty’s Inspector for Maths Education to discuss how his strategies and techniques help students increase their maths capabilities.
Children need to have creative and critical thinking skills to succeed in life
The main message that Dr Fong communicated in this talk is that children need to have creative and critical thinking skills to succeed in life, no matter what career they choose. He concluded that students can develop creative and critical thinking skills through Mathematical problem solving when using the right methods; this is because in order to trigger creativity there has to be a provocation, meaning children have to be provoked with questions that make them start thinking creatively and critically, while teachers encourage them to explore different alternatives and think critically in the procedure to solve the problem.
Raising a question such as: “I have a glass ball, I drop it to the floor. What would happen to the glass ball?” can trigger simple answers such as: “The ball will break” to more creative answers from students for instance considering the floor surface and the distance from which the ball is dropped, for example.
Any student is able to develop creative and critical thinking skills
The good news for parents and teachers is: there are ways that students can develop creative and critical thinking skills; they just need to be provoked with the right questions.
Dr Fong’s BrainBuilder programs have been carefully designed to equip students with critical and creative higher order thinking skills, using the successfully proven Singapore Maths methods. Students are continuously challenged, intellectually stimulated and encouraged by teachers to look at different methods to solve one problem.
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