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The Howard Rheingold Live Conversation: How Do We Teach Critical Thinking?

Thank you for participating in the live conversation about "critical thinking" with Howard Rheingold this past Wednesday, June 16.

In case you missed it please view the entire Elluminate Chat session here! A window will pop up!

Attached to the end of this post is the Elluminate chat.

Find the #HRChat Twitter archive here!

Please visit the links below:

Crap Detection 101

Howard Rheingold is the author of Tools for Thought, The Virtual Community and Smart Mobs. He was the editor of Whole Earth Review, The Millennium Whole Earth Catalog, founding executive editor of Hotwired, founder of Electric Minds, a Non-resident Fellow at the Annenberg Center for Communication, (USC, 2007), and a Visiting Professor at De Montfort University in the UK. He has taught Participatory Media and Collective Action (UC Berkeley, SIMS, Fall 2005, 2006, 2007), Virtual Community/Social Media (Stanford, Fall 2007, 2008; UC Berkeley, Spring 2008, 2009), Toward a Literacy of Cooperation (Stanford, Winter, 2005), and Digital Journalism (Stanford University Winter, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008).

His current projects include the Social Media Classroom, The Cooperation Project, Participatory Media Literacy, HASTAC/MacArthur Foundation grantee, and the 21st Century Literacies videos. Watch the 6 minute video interview.

You can follow him on Twitter,

We would like to thank Betsy Aoki, Microsoft's "Blog Queen" for helping us set-up this discussion with Howard. She was recently featured by ZDNet as one of Microsoft’s Women to Watch, and responsible for launching Microsoft's corporate blogging efforts at and Since then, she has worked to deliver a few more community projects for Microsoft -- Live QnA and the Xbox Live Indie Games platform. She tweets from @bing and creates community outreach projects for Bing.

Here are some Bing and ISTE resources: - this page is the front page of the ISTE-based curriculum, but also has additional Critical Thinking e-book embedded
in it.


Critical Thinking and Bing (Huffington Post):

Critical Thinking, Bing, and Howard Rheingold’s speech at NCCE:

Howard’s Ning group on the ISTE site:

**Don't forget to add your links & contribute to Howard's Critical Thinking Wiki,

Thank you for your participation! Here are the links in Howard's presentation:

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What will the Elluminate link be?
We'll announce the Elluminate room link the day of the session because presently it is used by others.
Some additional information:

David McGavock has started a great resource page at Please fee free to help fill this out.

Would you suggest sites to illustrate to students the need for critical thinking about online materials?
In our district we have really been trying to educate all stakeholders, parents, teachers and students on the importance of evaluating information gathered from online sources. We do this through by teaching the research process... such as the Big 6 and our Florida Research model FINDS.We begin teaching the research model in Kindergarten and on through Grade 12. As a teacher librarian... I know that learning how to search, gather, analyze and critically evaluate web resources is an essential 21century skill-- however I see that many teachers and parents lack these skills -- how can we raise awareness in the importance of these skills and Digital Citizenship as whole?
My question: How can educators best show their students how to employ critical thinking skills and teamwork to come up with the best solutions to problems?

Cybrary Man - Jerry Blumengarten

My Critical Thinking page:
Some comments or observations:

Should critical thinking be taught as an overt skill or is it really just a matter of encouraging constant questioning?

Don't older adults need more help than children? Given that there may be many adults who are unaware of or uncomfortable with new technological advances, should the effort go directly into the next generation from 'those in the know' or do we need to focus on all age ranges?

Given those of HR's tweets I've seen, some contain Wikipedia links, does he advocate the Wikipedia style of presentation - citations, online references, etc. - as being a good model on which to base electronic submissions from students?

Finally, working on the idea of trust, Was writing developed to pass on knowledge to future generations, or to be sure that what was recorded was accurate and trustworthy (early writing systems seem to record trade transactions...)? In other words, do we sometimes place too much trust in something just because it's been written?
Alicia Lopez
Twitter Name: LopezAli
Location: Ohio

Questions: What does teaching students 21st century authentic critical thinking learning look like? Skills driven learning approach? Inquiry-based learning approach? How do teachers routinely design quality assessments that reveal the benefits of critical thinking instruction - ability to think critically, communicate and solve complex problems?
I'm looking forward to meeting everyone at this online event Wed! :) You can see from my response to the flood of critical thinking tweets on #edchat today - this is something I feel strongly about and is important to Bing (as per our Huffington post position paper on the topic - ). Anyway, looking forward to tomorrow - Howard's got great stuff for you all and he's keenly interested in the opinions and real-life experiences this group has around the topic. You are all living and learning this stuff - looking forward so much to what you have to say!

Hello everyone! The link is now up! Please enter the room at least 30 minutes ahead of time to set-up your audio if you are asking a question! Thanks! :-) We'll take questions during the event as well!

Thanks Howard! I used DeBono Thinking Skills years ago and still do with my grade 4 class. I tried to use the link of tools posted but got bumped out. Is there a better link or something you can email me at
Good luck on your book! I look forward to reading it. When will Canada or at least BC get it published to buy up here?
Barbara Klassen



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