Friday, July 17, 2020

Plus Minus Interesting (PMI) Protocol for Critical Thinking

In a world full of Internet fluff and fake news, developing important critical thinking skills is an important part of educating our students today. I developed the following template inspired by Inquisitive.com's amazing reservoir of teacher visible thinking activities.

A Plus Minus Interesting or PMI chart is a great tool for students to use whether analyzing a new idea or investigating an article.  Here's how it works:

  • Plus - students list positives or pros associated with the idea. I have found having a certain number of required responses is helpful when working with students. The following template asks students to list 3 positives or pros. 
  • Minus - students list negatives or cons associated with the idea. I have found having an equal number of pros and cons is helpful in developing critical thinking skills. This forces students to think equally about both ideas without unintentional bias. The following template asks students to list 3 positives or pros. 
  • Interesting - students use this section to list 1 - 2 interesting ideas. Whether students feel negatively or positively about an idea, there is always something interesting to learn or observe. 


Conclusion:

I have found this template helpful in any classroom K - 12; however, I recently used this template for a professional development workshop that I am hosting on remote learning. Participants used the template to analyze an article on remote learning.  Want your own copy? Click here for a copy of the Google Doc template.

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