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Missing Piece in Puzzle

The Missing Piece
in Education

Children Learning

Benjamin Franklin's The Art of Virtue

Franklin's Philosophy of Life
in His Own Words

312 Pages $14.95

The Clear Thinking Team Posters

What is the Clear Thinking Team?

The CT (Clear Thinking) Team is a set of seven skills we all use to process information. These faculties give us the capacity to reason, to make conscious choices, and to act upon those choices. However we do not all possess nor utilize these skills to the same degree. Those who possess them to a higher degree are able to think more clearly and act more wisely than those who do not.

Unfortunately, we tend to think of these skills, if we think of them at all, as attributes that we are endowed with by nature rather than as skills that must be developed. As a result most of us do very little to consciously improve our ability to reason or think clearly. In fact, most of us tend to believe that what we think is pretty much the way things are. As a result most of us possess underdeveloped emotional intelligence resulting in a weakening of thinking clearly character trait.

In an era of unlimited access to information and almost no guidelines for separating the good from the bad, or the beneficial from the useless, young people need these skills more than ever before. If the most powerful things in the world are ideas, the most empowering thing in the world is to be able to distinguish a good idea from a bad idea. This is the great advantage young people can derive from making a serious effort to develop these seven C skills.

Criticism Criticism
The ability to examine, analyze, compare, evaluate, make judgments, and form opinions. Criticism is our first line of defense from members of the Stink'n Think'n Gang and agents of EPT. It requires information and ideas to meet the standards of truth and reason before accepting them. Criticism is not a skill that naturally comes without effort to most of us. The level of critical thinking skills a person attains is closely tied to progress in developing the other C skills and the amount of effort made to acquire them.
Creativity Creativity
The ability to imagine, originate, invent, design, and develop new things. Creativity is the skill we use for solving difficult problems. It is a required skill to bring new things into being, and often, to keep old things working. Without creativity there would be no technological progress and little beauty. Indeed, all progress would come to a standstill. This is true of the individual as well it is of people collectively.
Concentration Concentration
The ability to pay close attention and stay on task. Concentration determines our ability to learn and to perform any important task and there are few, if any, worthwhile accomplishments made without it. The challenge is how to help young people develop this skill. The answer is interest—if they find a topic interesting, or at least in their interest to know, they will be able to concentrate more easily.
Curiosity Curiosity
The ability to wonder, question, investigate, explore and seek out new information. Curiosity is a key component of criticism, creativity and concentration, and to be truly helpful, must be developed along with them. Without this skill, people can be led into all kinds of foolish ideas and choices. For example, a careless curiosity, such as experimenting with drugs, can get a person into a world of hurt.
Communication Communication
The ability to effectively exchange information with others, especially through reading, writing, speaking and listening. There are four language skills essential to effective communication. They are reading, writing, speaking and listening. Of the four, listening is perhaps the most important, and at the same time, most poorly developed communication skill most of us have
Correction Correction
The ability to correct errors in one’s own attitudes, beliefs, and actions. It is a difficult thing us to admit we are wrong. It is nearly as difficult to say "I'm sorry." Pride and an over fondness for our own opinions too often get in our way. Yet the ability to acknowledge and correct our mistakes is a key to personal progress.
Control Control
The ability to effectively govern one’s own conduct. There are two different kinds of control that govern our conduct, internal control and external control. The less internal control we possess the more we are subject to external controls. The greater self-control we possess, the greater our ability to accomplish worthwhile things. Of all the C skills, self-control is perhaps the most difficult to acquire, and cannot be acquired without a conscious effort.
7 Thinking Skills Poster


 The Clear Thinking Team
A full color 12" X 18" printed poster depicting the Seven C Skills necessary for overcoming the Stink'n Think'n Gang and agents of EPT. For use with The Seven C's of Thinking Clearly, grades 2-6 and 5-9. $3.95


pdf versions of this poster along with the 8 1/2 x 11 individual posters depicted above are included in the ebook editions of the Seven C's of Thinking Clearly

By helping young people consciously and deliberately focus on developing these skills, several important benefits can accrue. You will find them doing things like:

  • Taking greater ownership of their thoughts and actions
  • Being more teachable and interested in learning
  • Possessing keener insight and understanding
  • Exercising more effective self-management skills
  • Becoming better problem solvers
  • Developing greater skill in overcoming the influences of faulty thinking
  • Being more respectful to each other, and
  • Making better choices
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