Critical & Creative Thinking

Free Resources

  1. Stories With Holes - Students are presented with a story that doesn't quite make sense. They must ask yes or no questions to figure out what is really going on. Typically, it is best to ask general questions and get more specific as you go and never make assumptions!

    • My favorite free site

    • Try Stories with Holes logic with other things, like a map! Pick a state or country and students ask yes or no questions to figure out the location. Example: Are you East of the Mississippi River? We try to do it in 8 questions or less, then 7, then 6, and so on.

  2. Socratic Smackdown - I typically use this with grades 4+. Basically a gamified way to debate and discuss topics.

  3. Philosophy Unit - This unit encompasses a lot of different standards. Very fun unit for middle school students to get them thinking about various philosophical scenarios. Thanks to Cheryl Smith for helping with this!

  4. Strategy Game Design Unit - Student go through mechanics, theme, conflict, and prototyping their own board games. I've also created a slideshow for it, so all the resources from this amazing site are in one place. Get the slideshow here.

  5. Enrichment Rooms for Critical and Creative Thinking

  6. Brainteasers

  7. Escape Rooms Created for Gifted Students!

Want to have students create their own escape rooms about something they are learning? This would be the coolest independent study project! Check out this site to learn more about creating them!

Purchase Curriculum

  1. Primary Education Thinking Skills (PETS) - Best for grades K-3. 24 lessons per book that will truly stretch students and get them thinking critically and creatively to solve complex problems.

  • Book 1

  • Book 2 - Slideshow to go with book 2. Has organization, I can statements, overview, and more for each lesson. You'll still need the book, but this will help you implement it seamlessly.

  • Book 3 - Slideshow to go with book 3. Has organization, I can statements, overview, and more for each lesson. You'll still need the book, but this will help you implement it seamlessly.

  1. Cooperative Problem Solving - I love cooperative problem solving games where each student is given a clue that helps solve the problem.

  2. Stories With Holes - Students are presented with a story that doesn't quite make sense. They must ask yes or no questions to figure out what is really going on. Typically, it is best to ask general questions and get more specific as you go and never make assumptions!