Enhance your ability to integrate critical thinking and problem solving into your curriculum

Imagine your students inventing a WALK EASY wheelchair that improves circulation, or how about an ORTHO PILLOW to keep a retainer or headgear in place during sleep?

All children can identify problems in their homes or neighborhoods. Almost every day of their lives they will face at least one problem. An unmade bed, a dog that eats the cat food, a grandmother who broke her leg and has to keep it elevated when she sits or a grandfather who cannot grasp a bar of soap because of severe arthritis are all examples of real-life problems solved by New Hampshire students. By having students identify the problem to be solved they become actively engaged in the learning process. Once the problem has been identified, stand aside and watch them go.

The New Hampshire Young Inventors' Program provides elementary and middle school teachers with a hands on approach to promote critical thinking and problem solving skills in their classrooms. A unit on inventive thinking, which includes the production of an original invention, can meet several educational goals. These include the following, but are really limited only by the imaginations of you and your students. Your students will:

Develop higher-level thinking skills as defined in Bloom's Taxonomy

Use creative- and critical-thinking skills

Solve an actual problem using creative problem-solving techniques

Use library and research skills

Document his or her own inventive-thinking process

Produce an original invention

Experience success and increased self-esteem

Receive recognition for excellence in the inventive process