family spending time


The application of critical thinking skills at home is different than in the classroom. Children will be analyzing issues with people who they are related to and live with, their family. In this environment, children may have more time to evaluate with their family.

Also, the family members’ reactions will be different than peers in the classroom. Family may be more critical or supportive of what a child is thinking. The child’s parents and older siblings, may be apt to tell their child all the answers instead of letting them figure it out. To prevent this, we will use a different version of the critical thinking question in the previous post: Time has just been taken away from the world for a day. How will your family function?

Most people use time as an indicator to achieve something such as: eating, working, playing, and sleeping.

Many parents and older siblings will be in unfamiliar territory if you take time away. Doing an activity around this question will most likely have the whole family stumped. Below is how you put the whole family’s critical thinking skills to practice with this question.

  1. Plan to have a day or half a day where you operate with no time.
  2. The best time to do this is on the weekend or a day when no one needs to work or go to school.
  3. Put everyone’s cell phone and watches into a safe place the night before.
  4. Cover all clocks in the home the night before.
  5. Put away computers and anything that keeps time.
  6. Remind your family of the question/problem: Time has just been taken away from the world for a day. How will your family function?
  7. The day before, the family should come together and predict how they will function (critical thinking).
  8. Record each family member’s response.
  9. The next day, as soon as you wake up, start to function without time.
  10. After the activity, debrief how your day went… (critical thinking)
    • How did you know when to eat?
    • Did you communicate more without your cell phones?
    • Who was the most comfortable with this activity?
    • Who was the most uncomfortable with this activity?
    • What family member predicted what would happen?
    • Would you do this again?
  11. PLEASE NOTE: Adjust this activity if there is a situation where you need time. For example, if someone needs to take their medicine every 4 hours. This is not worth the risk.


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