let's think

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  • LETS THINK!!

    An aid to creative thinking, taken from Tony Ryans 20 Thinkers Keys.

  • Key - DIFFERENT USES

    Using imagination to list some widely different uses for a chosen object (from area of study).

    JUSTIFICATION:

    The concept of recycling is an important one. This key is worth applying to many everyday (and often disposable) products.

  • Find 10 uses for old red plastic noses.

  • How many different uses can you think of for each of

    a brick?

    a paper plate?

    a single sock?

  • Key - The ALTERNATIVE

    List ways in which to complete a task without using the normal tools or implements.

    JUSTIFICATION:

    Necessity is the mother of invention. Take away the normal tool and spark someinnovative solutions.

  • Give 3 ways to

    read a book that is 100 metres away

    keep your valuables safe without a locker

    drink soup without a spoon

  • Work out 3 ways to clean your teeth without a toothbrushcook toast without a toasterpaint a chair without a paintbrushmow the lawn without a mower

  • Key VARIATIONS

    This key employs a special group of words. Start each question with How many ways can you

    JUSTIFICATION:

    Another one for expanding your thinking. Some very practical ideas often result from usage of this key.

  • How many ways can you:

    paint a house?

    wash an elephant?

    make new friends?

    turn a TV on?

  • Key - REVERSE

    Place words such as cannot, never and not in sentences which are commonly displayed in a listing format.

    JUSTIFICATION:

    Students are too often required to regurgitate endless lists of facts. Moving in the opposite direction still requires a sound knowledge base, but it forces students to think.

  • List things you cant put in water

    List things you cannot measure with a ruler

    List things you would not find in Scotland

    List things you cannot do with a pencilCAN YOU:

  • Name 10 things that you could not clean.

    List 5 sounds that you have never heard.

    Name 10 things that you could not photograph.CAN YOU:

  • Key - The ALPHABET

    Choose an object or general category of objects (possibly which features in the area of study) and compile alist of words from A to Z which have some relevance to the object/s. Then try to expand on some ideas which link with each of the words.

    THE JUSTIFICATION:

    Using the alphabetical format clarifies students thinking. It is a sorting process which is made easier by considering one aspect at a time.

  • The Alphabet Key

    Write an A-Z of

    things in a school

    means of transport

    famous people

    foods

    sports

  • Key - BRAINSTORMINGState a problem which needs to be solved and brainstorm a list of solutions. Start the brainstorm statement with the words How to .....

    JUSTIFICATION:Great for solutions to everyday problems. Make sure that the freedom offered within the rules is available to all participants.

    THE RULES OF BRAINSTORMING:1. Think of as many ideas as you can; dont hesitate and consider the implications; simply write them down.2. Unusual or silly ideas are acceptable.3. Tagging onto other peoples ideas is encouraged.4. No criticism of any ideas is allowed.

  • Brainstorm as many ways you canto encourage people NOT to drive their cars to work.

  • Key - The QUESTIONStart with the answer, and try to list 5 questions which could be linked with that answer only.

    JUSTIFICATION:An excellent break from the pattern of the teacher asking all of the questions. Studentsstill need to demonstrate a solid knowledge base.

  • List five possible questions for which the answer is Midnight.

  • Key INTERPRETATION

    Describe an unusual situation and then think of some different explanations for the existence of that situation.

    JUSTIFICATION:

    Another innovative thinking exercise. Develops the ability to consider a wide range of consequences.

  • Give three possible reasons for each of these:

    a boy is running away from a woman carrying her handbag your next door neighbour carries a dog lead when he has no dog a man is on a cliff waving his arms about frantically

  • Key - FORCED RELATIONSHIPSDevelop a solution to a problem by employing a number of dissimilar objects.For Years 3/4 - two objectsFor Years 5-7 three objects

    JUSTIFICATION:The dimensions of problem-solving are expanded dramatically with this key. Never underestimate the importance of constantly developing alternative strategies.

  • Solve the problem of two friends arguing by using:DiceMarbles

  • Solve the problem of getting wet in the rain by using:A toilet rolla paper plateand

  • Solve the problem of being bored by using: A pencil andfive old compact discs

  • You need to retrieve your kite from a very tall tree without breaking it, by using only:

    a packet of sweets

    a hairbrush

    a comic

    How would you do this?

  • Key - The RIDICULOUS

    Make a ridiculous statement that would be virtually impossible to implement, and then attempt to actually substantiate it.

    JUSTIFICATION:

    The expressions Its not possible and Thats ridiculous often prevent the development of many excellent ideas. Learn to break through them.

  • We would be better off if:

    dogs could talk to us

    school started at age 20

    children taught each other

    State how and why these ideas might work.

  • Key COMMONALITY

    Decide upon 2 objects which would generally have nothing in common, and try to outline some points of commonality between them.

    JUSTIFICATION:

    Another mind stretcher. Great for creative ideas as well as the development of unusual concepts.

  • What do the following have in common

    a toilet and a car

    a cat and a book

    a flower and a packet of crisps

  • List as many things as you can thatAyers Rock and the Pacific Ocean have in common.

  • Key PREDICTION

    Ask for a series of predictions in regard to a particular situation, product or set of circumstances.

    JUSTIFICATION:Attempting to predict the future is not the timewaster that some would lead us to believe. The journey is always easier if you know where you are going.

  • Predict 5 present day household appliances which will be obsolete in 20 years time.Say why - and what, if anything, will replace them.

  • Predict the power source of the family car by the year 2020.

  • Make some predictions about

    what school will be like in 100 years time;

    what you will be like aged 50;

    how we will travel in the year 2100.