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2020 Vision

:
“Changing the Face of Education in Fayette County”

Critical Thinking Skills Chess and Strategic Games
October 31, 2005

Work Group: Critical Thinking, Chess, and Strategic Games

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2020 Vision: “Changing the Face of Education in Fayette County”

2020 Vision: “Changing the Face of Education in Fayette County” Work Group: Critical Thinking, Chess, and Strategic Games
Overarching Vision Statement:

Students need a full set of critical thinking, problem solving, and teamwork skills. To develop these skills, we recommend that students receive an education which includes critical thinking skills, chess, strategic games, and creative problem solving (CPS) techniques to support and complement the general curriculum. The first recommendation details the management that would be pivotal to the long-term success of the programs throughout Fayette County Public Schools. The following recommendations are the avenues students will follow in order to learn these vital skill sets.

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2020 Vision: “Changing the Face of Education in Fayette County” Work Group: Critical Thinking, Chess, and Strategic Games Final Report Dedicated Support Personnel
Specific Recommendation: Develop and invest in a long-term strategy to ensure Fayette County Public School students receive an education that incorporates critical and creative thinking skills, chess and strategic games (CTCSG) into the curriculum. To best serve this recommendation’s objectives, initially provide a dedicated specialist to develop and manage a district-wide CTCSG program. Additional personnel will be assigned as the program develops. This CTCSG program will run from kindergarten through twelfth grade and progress though levels of complexity according to the students’ growing skills and knowledge. Committing expert personnel to this program will ensure that • all students benefit from the program through central oversight and accountability • the program benefits from the latest research and teaching methods, and is equipped with state-of the art materials • the program’s budget is utilized efficiently and fairly • the program remains successful through 2020 and beyond • school district teaching staff have the necessary support and resources to make the program a success

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Research Rationale for how this change will help kids: Extensive research has been performed correlating an increase in test scores and cognitive skills, as well as improved discipline, with the incorporation of critical and creative thinking methodology, chess and other strategic games into educational curriculum from pre-school through college. Some examples are: An international group of experts developed a definition of critical thinking and identified reasons to teach critical thinking skills to students, citing studies showing substantial increases in GPA for students who have been taught critical thinking methods. The article further develops a convincing argument that the very foundation of a democratic and prosperous society depends on the ability of its citizens to think critically. Facione, Peter A., Critical Thinking: What it is and Why it Counts, California Academic Press, 2004 Update http://www.insightassessment.com/articles.html Critical Thinking scores were directly correlated to academic success as measured by educational psychology tests and GPA in a study performed at Texas A&M University. Gadsella, Bernadette, et al., Assessment of Critical Thinking Scores in Relation with Educational Psychology and GPA for Education Majors, Department of Psychology and Special Education, Texas A&M University-Commerce, Feb 2, 2004. http://www.calpress.com/resource.html A helpful definition of critical thinking, why it is important in education, and how it can be incorporated into an educational approach through easy and inexpensive methods, is found in the following article. Schafersman, Steven, D., An Introduction to Critical Thinking, Jan 1991 http://www.freeinquiry.com/critical-thinking.html Critical Thinking is a measurable skill. The following list of critical thinking tests provides a glimpse into the wealth of research and effort invested in the teaching and testing of critical thinking methods. Ennis, Robert H., An Annotated List of Critical Thinking Tests, 11/99. http://www.criticalthinking.net/goals.html “The SAT Reasoning Test is a measure of the critical thinking skills you’ll need for academic success in college.” From the CollegeBoard.com website. [emphasis added] Additional references supporting the need for strengthening the critical thinking skills of students are provided in the other two recommendations made by this committee.

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Implementation:
Implementation Steps Hire, or assign from the current staff, a CTCSG specialist and provide the specialist with a budget to perform assigned duties. Identify, research and evaluate educational materials, curricula, games, educational programs, and training programs for faculty that support the objectives of the program. Develop age-appropriate programs and provide training, support, and educational materials for School District personnel. Prepare an annual budget for the program. Provide the means to involve parents and community at large. Oversee a CTCSG support staff, to be hired as the program develops. Person Responsible for Completing Step FCPS selection committee, with possible representatives from the school board and schools. CTCSG specialist with support of volunteer committee Possible Resources? Start Date Year 1 End Date N/A

See attached list of internet links to websites and organizations

Year 1

Ongoing

CTCSG specialist with support of volunteer committee CTCSG specialist CTCSG specialist CTCSG specialist

Year 1

Ongoing

Year 1 Year 1 Year 2

Ongoing Ongoing Ongoing

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Relationships between Workgroups

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2020 Vision: “Changing the Face of Education in Fayette County” Work Group: Critical Thinking, Chess, and Strategic Games Final Report Critical Thinking, Chess, and Strategic Games Subcommittee

I. Recommendation: As demonstrated in Dennis Pearce’s graphic (Suggested Relationships Between Workgroups, please see attachment, page 33), Critical Thinking Skills has a relationship with nearly all of the groups in the 2020 Vision platform. With that in mind, it is strongly recommended that some form of program be adopted to enhance the Critical Thinking Skills of our students. Decades of documented research clearly shows that Chess not only fits the criteria for enhancing Critical Thinking Skills, but also addresses social and behavioral issues in a positive manner. Therefore, our recommendation is that Chess be incorporated into the curriculum to a specified degree at all grade levels in the Fayette County Schools. Additional Strategic Games will be incorporated as time permits.

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Rationale: 1. Chess improves critical thinking and creative problem solving skills. • • • • • • • • • • • • Chess fosters critical, creative, and original thinking. Chess increases self-confidence, patience, memory, logic, critical thinking, observation, analysis, creativity, concentration, persistence, self-control, sportsmanship, respect for others, self-esteem, and coping with frustration. Chess increases strategic thinking skills, stimulates intellectual creativity, improves problem-solving abilities, and teaches how to make difficult and abstract decisions independently; the ‘best’ decision based on the given information. Chess develops analytical, synthetic, and decision making skills that can then be transferred to real life. Chess demonstrates the importance of flexible planning, concentration, and consequences of decisions made. Chess requires higher-order thinking skills, analysis of actions and consequences, and visualization of future outcomes. Chess dramatically improves a child’s ability to think rationally. Chess increases cognitive skills, honors non-traditional cognitive skills, and it demands both inductive and deductive reasoning. Chess improves children’s aptitude in recognizing patterns. Chess builds life skills and critical thinking. Chess builds metacognition as students learn to examine their own thinking. This constant reflection on causes and motives, as well as anticipation of future actions, builds an important skill that students will use in all aspects of their lives. Chess limits the element of luck; it teaches the importance of planning and requires that reason be coordinated with instinct.

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2. Chess raises both test scores and I.Q. • • • • • • Chess will challenge gifted children along with helping under-achieving students learn how to study and strive for excellence. Chess can raise I.Q. scores. Learning to engage in deep and thorough chess research develops skills applicable to academic research. Chess enhances reading, memory, language, and mathematical abilities. Chess contributes to higher grades, especially in English and Math studies. Chess challenges and expands our understanding of intelligence.

3. Chess positively affects behavior, school attendance, and socialization. • • • • • • • • • Chess reaches both boys and girls regardless of their natural abilities or socio-economic backgrounds. It allows girls to compete with boys on a non-threatening, socially acceptable plane. Chess removes barriers, making the classroom a neutral, safe place by allowing children to set aside differences; thus friendships and bonds are more readily created. Chess is global in nature in that the ‘language’ of chess transcends any language barrier. Chess teaches the value of hard work, concentration, and commitment. Chess teaches a child to realize that he/she is responsible for his/her own actions, and must accept the consequences. Chess offers immediate positive and negative feedback for problem solving. Chess teaches children to try their best to win, but to accept defeat with grace. Chess is a game of ‘etiquette’ and instills behavior that carries over into other social arenas. Chess, through team competition, gives students a palpable sign of their accomplishments and builds a sense of team spirit while maintaining the emphasis of the ability of the individual. Chess provides a concrete, inexpensive and compelling way to “rise above.” Chess creates a pattern or thinking system that, when used faithfully, breeds success. Chess provides impetus for school attendance as chess can easily become a child’s most eagerly awaited school activity. If a child has one thing to look forward to at school, they are more likely to attend.

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Research: The following list is far from comprehensive—the listings below echo the tomes of research supporting the above recommendation. Many, many, studies have been conducted and statistically analyzed, proving the theory that chess can indeed do all that it claims. • • • • • • • • • • • • • • “Chess in Education Research Summary”, Dr. Robert Ferguson, Jr., Executive Director, American Chess School. http://www.uschess.org/scholastic/sc-research.html ; http://www.quadcitychess.com/benefits_of_chess.html “Why Chess?”, http://edutechchess.com/whychess.html “Metaphors and Methods: More than a Game, Eight transition lessons chess teaches”, Mark Kennedy. http://www.cycnet.org/cyc-online/cycol-0804-chess.html “The case for Chess as a tool to Develop Our Children’s Minds”, Dr. Peter Dauvergne, University of Sydney, 2000. http://www.auschess.org.au/articles/chessmind.htm “Scientific Proof: Chess Improves Reading Scores”, http://www.successchess.com/SCS0001.html#WHY “Chess Improves Children’s Reading Scores”, www.chessintheschools.org/research.html “Chess and Math? Improving Math Performance 1 Move at a Time”, http://math.about.com/od/reference/a/chess.html “Chess Improves Academic Performance”, http://www.successchess.com/SCS0001.html#WHY “Chess Is Cool For Kids”, www.chesscentral.com http://chess.photobooks.com/genesis/web_pages/html/smart.html http://www.portfolio.mvm.ed.ac.uk/studentwebs/session4/18/chessandeducation.htm http://www.samizdat.com/girlsche.html http://www.his.com/~pshapiro/chess.html http://www.ctchess.com/?sect=why

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Cost Considerations: Chess is inexpensive and can readily be incorporated into an existing school curriculum. Ten dollars will buy a vinyl roll-up chess board and set of pieces. Chess clocks, while an integral component of the game are not necessary for basic instruction, cost approximately $65 each; book, video, and software prices vary. • • • • There are many books, workbooks, DVD/videos, and software packages on the market from which a curriculum and study plan could easily be formulated. Many of the teaching resources such as DVD/videos and software could be maintained by the Chess/Games Dept. at IAK Office and circulated among schools on a scheduled basis. Existing foundations, such as the United States Chess Federation, The American Foundation for Chess, and The Chess Trust offer free and/or reduced prices for supplies and literature to school/clubs to offset start-up costs. The above listed foundations offer resources and informational support to aide in the design and implementation of chess in schools.

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II. Implementation of Recommendation:

Step 1: Create a Department in IAK Office to coordinate Chess/Games instruction. (reference Specialist Recommendation ) Person Responsible: IAK Office. Possible Resources: new hires, existing IAK personnel, or a combination of the two. Step 2: The Chess/Games Department would obtain/train enough Chess/Games teachers to insure that each school has a designated Chess/Games teacher. Like certain other Electives, each Chess teacher could be assigned to multiple schools. Person Responsible: Chess/Games Dept. Possible Resources: FCPS teachers and staff; Fayette County community— including senior citizens; local college students; members of Bluegrass Chess Club; Lexington-based Grandmasters Gregory Kaidanov and Alexander Goldin; high school students (to assist with after school chess clubs). Step 3: Provide training for all Chess/Games classroom teachers. Person responsible: Chess/Games Dept. Possible resources: See Step 2 above. Step 4: Obtain and distribute Chess/Games supplies to all Fayette County Schools Person Responsible: Chess/Games Dept. Possible Resources: US Chess Federation; Chess Trust; Kentucky Chess Assoc. Step 6: Provide a Chess/Games classroom in each school. Person Responsible: Chess/Games Dept.; SBDM Councils. Step 7: Add a Chess/Games class to Elementary School curriculum in the Special Class Rotation. Add a Chess/Games class to Middle School curriculum as an Elective—on same level as Band or Vocal Music. Add a Chess/Games class to High School curriculum as an Elective. Step 8: Insure that each school has a Chess Club as Extracurricular option wherein each student has the opportunity to participate in competitive chess---tournament play. Establish a Chess League for Fayette County Schools with divisions for K-3, K-5, K-8 and K-12. Person Responsible: Chess/Games Dept. and SBDM Councils. Step 9: Teach standardized Chess curriculum. See sample curriculum below.
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Sample Chess Curriculum: Kindergarten: Teach students how to play the game. First and Second Grade: Begin to teach more advanced principles, including basic to mid-range difficulty puzzles and tactics exercises. Third – Fifth Grade: Build upon previous lessons by solving more complicated strategies, and puzzles; learn specific openings and defenses, i.e. The Four Knights, The Ruy Lopez, The Scotch Game, The French Defense, The Alekhine, The Sicilian, Queen’s Gambit, King’s Gambit, etc. Sixth – Eighth Grade: Continue building on previous lessons. Analyze documented Grandmaster Games. High School: Advanced level play. While certified personnel would be assigned as Chess/Games classroom teacher, consider contracting with higher-ranked adult players as visiting instructors rotating to each High School. Remedial Instruction: As new students will be arriving in Fayette County Schools each year, perhaps with little or no previous chess instruction, remedial chess lessons would be given. This instruction can be accomplished in very little time, less than a month in most cases. More time would be allotted for this instruction as the grade level which a student would be entering Fayette County School advances. Additional Strategic Games: Strategic Games was defined as “those games that rely exclusively on logic and problem solving while eliminating the element of luck, i.e. the roll of a die or the turn of a card.” Games researched included Go, Othello, and Mancala. These games contribute some of the same benefits, but not to the same degree, as does Chess.

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2020 Vision: “Changing the Face of Education in Fayette County” Work Group: Critical Thinking, Chess, and Strategic Games Final Report Critical Thinking to Enhance Learning Subcommittee
Introduction
The games and activities children play help equip them with the skills they need in school and in the real world. They learn, practice and improve interpersonal skills, create and strengthen friendships, and work on teamwork skills. These skills are learned and honed when they participate in games and real-life challenges that require solving problems using critical and creative thinking processes. However, Critical and Creative thinking skills are not second nature to all students. Teaching and practicing Creative, and Logic Problem Solving, along with the supporting Teamwork techniques—as shown by the relationship of workgroups graphic on the last page of this report—are integral to the success of all aspects of Vision 2020. Through adoption and implementation of this recommendation, Fayette County students will acquire the skill sets necessary to become Critical Thinking adults who can work together with others to evaluate data, strategically plan, and solve problems. Equipped with their Vision 2020 education and these critical and creative problem solving skills, they will be armed for success in the job market and in real-life situations.

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Introduction to Creative Thinking
Critical Thinking analytic convergent vertical probability judgment focused objective answer left brain verbal linear reasoning yes but

Creative Thinking http://www.virtualsalt.com/crebook1.htm
generative

By Robert Harris
divergent lateral possibility suspended judgment diffuse subjective an answer right brain visual associative richness, novelty yes and

July 1, 1998

“Much of the thinking done in formal education emphasizes the skills of analysis--teaching students how to understand claims, follow or create a logical argument, figure out the answer, eliminate the incorrect paths and focus on the correct one. However, there is another kind of thinking, one that focuses on exploring ideas, generating possibilities, looking for many right answers rather than just one. Both of these kinds of thinking are vital to a successful working life, yet the latter one tends to be ignored until after college. We might differentiate these two kinds of thinking like this [chart at left]. In an activity like problem solving, both kinds of thinking are important to us. First, we must analyze the problem; then we must generate possible solutions; next we must choose and implement the best solution; and finally, we must evaluate the effectiveness of the solution. As you can see, this process reveals an alternation between the two kinds of thinking, critical and creative. In practice, both kinds of thinking operate together much of the time and are not really independent of each other.”
By author of Creative Problem Solving: A Step-by-Step Approach, Pyrczak Publishing, 2002

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Rationale for How This Change Will Help Kids:

General

Logical thought processes along with strategic, creative, and critical thinking skills are essential for the success of our students in 2020. They will need these skills in school, at home, and on the job. Colleges and employers already recognize the importance of these skills and are specifically looking for individuals that demonstrate and have experience with these skills. Teaching Fayette County students critical thinking and creative problem solving skills is integral to the success of 2020 Vision. ___________________________ "The purpose of critical thinking is to achieve understanding, evaluate view points, and solve problems. Since all three areas involve the asking of questions, we can say that critical thinking is the questioning or inquiry we engage in when we seek to understand, evaluate, or resolve."
Maiorana, Victor P. Critical Thinking Across the Curriculum: Building the Analytical Classroom. 1992. http://www.kcmetro.cc.mo.us/longview/ctac/definitions.htm

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Logical Thinking & Strategic Play
Logical thinking is the basis for all strategic, creative, and critical thinking skills. Students must be able to take all the available information and form relationships among the data. They must be able to evaluate the data and deduce logical conclusions from it. This skill is used, not only in school, but in higher education, in everyday life, and on the job. We must emphasize logic problems and other tools to provide students the opportunity to develop the logical analytical and deduction skills they will need for critical and creative thinking. Strategic games are important (and fun) ways to teach critical thinking skills to students. Strategic games (game that relies on skill, logic and problem solving and eliminates ‘luck’ i.e. the turn of a card or the roll of the die) have been proven, through more than 50 years of exhaustive research, to improve critical thinking skills, to raise math and reading scores, to raise self-esteem, to improve behavior, and to improve school attendance. Through the use of strategic games, students learn to apply their logic, critical thinking, and creative problems skills to form successful gamewinning strategies. In addition, motivated students could also form together in an after-school game club that might also involve parents, and community members. Possible games include Go, Othello, and Mancala. ___________________________
“Logical thinking is not a magical process or a matter of genetic endowment, but a learned mental process,” says Dr. Karl Albrecht in his book Brain Building. “It is the process in which one uses reasoning consistently to come to a conclusion. Problems or situations that involve logical thinking call for structure, for relationships between facts, and for chains of reasoning that ‘make sense.’”

___________________________ Logic Resources: http://www.geocities.com/Heartland/Plains/4484/logic.htm#whatare http://crpuzzles.com/logic/ http://perplexus.info/ Many other sites and books are available. ___________________________ “It is time to cut down on the core National Curriculum and give more time to a creative curriculum devised by schools themselves. China and other countries in Far East are placing an emphasis on the creative curriculum, because they know that future personal, social and economic success depends on creative thinking skills. OFSTED [Office for Standards in Education in England] have found that those schools with the most imaginative and creative approach to the curriculum, schools that interpret the curriculum within their own clear philosophy, tend to get the best results.”
--This ‘think piece’ by Robert Fisher was commissioned by the National College for School Leadership, and published in the Times Educational Supplement on March 7th 2003, p30. Fisher went on to author “Unlocking Creativity: Teaching Across the Curriculum” (published by David Fulton Publishers, 2004).

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Creative and Critical Thinking Creativity incorporates both creative and critical thinking and balances the processes of both.

Creative Thinking:
Encountering gaps, paradoxes, opportunities, challenges, or concerns; then searching for meaningful new connections by generating -• Many possibilities • Varied possibilities • Unusual or original possibilities • Details to expand or enrich possibilities

Critical Thinking:
Examining possibilities carefully, fairly, and constructively; then focusing thoughts and actions by -• Organizing and analyzing possibilities • Refining and developing promising possibilities • Ranking or prioritizing options • Choosing or deciding on certain options
--paraphrased from Creative Problem Solving: An Introduction (3rd edition), Treffinger, Isaksen, and Dorval (2000)

The results of 50 years of amassed research on creative problem solving (CPS) have clearly demonstrated that creative problem solving provides creativeand critical-thinking techniques to apply to school, life, and life. Faculty can teach students CPS tools and skills, and can utilize them in the classroom to enhance the teaching of their subject matter. In fact, a member of our committee (a teacher-in-training) noted that every education class he currently takes emphasizes the learning and use of creative problem solving skills.

___________________________
“Many programs developed to enhance thinking focus on the development of critical thinking skills rather than (or, as opposed to) on creative thinking skills. Creative thinking and effective problem solving are based on both creative and critical types of thinking.” --“Curriculum Planning for Creative Thinking and Problem Solving” by Isaksen and Parnes, Journal of Creative Behavior, 1985, vol. 19, no. 1.

___________________________
In addition, educationally-based programs—such as Future Problem Solving (www.fpsp.org), Odyssey of the Mind (www.odyssey.com), and Destination Imagination (www.destinationimagination.org)—have been developed to teach students creative problem and critical thinking skills. These programs empower students to synthesize solutions to complex problems—on their own. These practical challenges tap the logical, creative, and critical thinking skills the students have learned—plus stretch their teamwork skills. These programs also offer the opportunity to involve parents and community members through an after-school program/club. Many of these programs offer in-classroom curriculum elements for use by staff, as well as supporting materials for use by staff or parent volunteers.

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“The CPS framework builds on more than five decades of research, development, and practice worldwide--in educational settings and in business settings as well. The effectiveness and impact of the CPS framework has been addressed in more than 700 studies (Isaksen & DeSchrver, 2001).
--“Building Creative Excellence” by Donald Treffinger & Grover Young, 2002, Center for Creative Learning.

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Creative Problem Solving Resources: Websites: http://www.creativelearning.com http://www.cpsb.com http://www.unc.edu/~gdhughes/stct.htm http://www.trinity.wa.edu.au/plduffyrc/teaching/thinking.htm http://falcon.jmu.edu/~ramseyil/critical.htm http://www.criticalthinking.org/ Books: “Unlocking Creativity: Teaching Across the Curriculum” (published by David Fulton Publishers, 2004. “Creative Problem Solving: An Introduction” 3rd edition by Donald Treffinger, Scott Isaksen, K. Brian Dorval, 2000. “The Problem Solver’s Practical Toolbox” by Rosemary Bognar, Mo Guy, Susan Beth Purifico, Lindy Redmond, Jill Shoonmaker, Patricia Schoonover, Donald Treffinger, 2003. “Building Creative Excellence” by Donald Treffinger and Grover Young, 2002. “Big Tools for Young Thinkers” by Susan Jekker-Mathers, Kristin Puccio, 2000. In-Classroom Examples: From Australia – where they are using these skills in the classroom http://www.eddept.wa.edu.au/gifttal/provision/provinst.htm from The Education of Gifted and Talented Students in Western Australia – part of the Dept of Education & Training – Government of Western Australia

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Teamwork
The complexity and depth of challenges that face the world will not be solved in “isolation” by “absent-minded professors,” therefore in conjunction with the logical, critical and creative thinking skills, it is also imperative that Fayette County students learn teamwork skills. These are essential skills in education and are desired by employers. Teamwork can be defined as: The process of influencing a group of diverse individuals, each with their own goals, needs, and perspectives, to work together effectively for the good of the project and group goals such that their team will accomplish more than the sum of their individual efforts could otherwise achieve. Reams of research demonstrate that teams of people can and do accomplish more than individuals. One of the best types of anecdotal evidence or “research” that supports the real value of Teamwork is that corporations and businesses around the globe have embraced teamwork. They seek to train their staff and leadership teams in teamwork, and they are seeking students trained in teamwork. “Successful Creative Problem Solving Teams: Growing, Guiding, and Celebrating” by Donald Treffinger and Susan Beth Purifico, 2004. “Team-Building Activities for Every Group” by Alanna Jones, 1999. “The New Why Teams Don’t Work: What Goes Wrong and How to Make It Right” by Harvey Robbins & Michael Finley http://www.mfinley.com/bizbooks/list-teamsbook.htm Adams, Susan and Leda Kydoniefs. "Making Teams Work." Quality Progress. 33 no. 1 (January 2000): 43-48 Blair, Gerard M. "Laying the Foundations for Effective Teamwork." University of Edinburgh, Electronics and Electrical Engineering. Edinburgh, Scotland: University of Edinburgh, Electronics and Electrical Engineering, September 2, 1997. (Originally published: Engineering Science and Education Journal. 2 no. 1 (February 1993): 15-19.) http://www.ee.ed.ac.uk/~gerard/Teaching/art0.html Wideman, Max. "Project Teamwork, Personality Profiles and the Population at Large: Do We have Enough of the Right Kind of People?" Proceedings of the 29th Annual Project Management Institute Seminar/Symposium. Long Beach, CA: Project Management Institute, 1998. (Updated presentation, April, 2002.) http://www.maxwideman.com/papers/profiles/intro.htm Center for Collaborative Organizations, formerly the Center for the Study of Work Teams http://www.workteams.unt.edu/ http://www.reviewing.co.uk/toolkit/teams-and-teamwork.htm Fisher, Kimball (1993). Leading self-directed work teams: A guide to developing new team leadership skills. New York: McGraw-Hill, Inc. Harrington, H. James (1994). Of tails and teams: A fable for children and CEO's. Milwaukee, WI: ASQC Quality Press. Zander, Alvin F. (1974). Productivity and group success: Team spirit vs. the individual achiever. Psychology Today, 8, 64-68.
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Group Recommendation:
We recommend the integration of all aspects of creative and critical thinking skills into the curriculum of all Fayette County Schools. Recognizing that critical thinking and problem solving are already incorporated into the general curriculum, specifically, we propose strengthening the curriculum by incorporating more tools to teach logic and strategy (such as logic problems, puzzles, and strategic games) and creative problem solving techniques (such as brainstorming, morphological matrix, etc.).

NOTE: We recognize that incorporation of creative problem solving, logic, critical, and strategic thinking skills across the curriculum is not a quick fix—it involves retraining some legacy staff (or understanding that they will retire before the 2020 goal date), in-service training for current faculty, training/hiring support staff, purchase of materials, and potential incorporation of these tools and skills into the classroom and curriculum (on the shoulders of already overtaxed teachers)—however, this approach will greatly improve the opportunities for success of students as they go forward with CPS and strategic thinking skills integrated into of their education.
Research shows that when students can think logically, as well as understand and use strategic thinking and creative problem solving skills, they are successful in the classroom and this translates to job success. These students are sought-after by colleges and employers. These students improve companies’ competitive position because they know how to find solutions to challenging situations in a rapidly changing and increasingly competitive world. The group recommendation further specifies:

Action Item 1:
A. Strengthen elements of strategic thinking and CPS in the curriculum/classroom, B. Offer in-service trainings that focus on these elements, C. Offer a rotating “special” or elective to specifically teach students how to solve logic problems, strategies for thinking games, and creative problem solving and teamwork tools and skills. D. Community involvement via a game club and an after-school CPS program. Parents, community members, and/or staff can lead both afterschool clubs.

Action Item 2:
a) Provide and train a Fayette County Schools staff member to be expert/consultant for strategic games and creative problem solving. This staff member will train special/elective educators, oversee and support these programs, and stay current with all aspects of teaching students these skills. In addition, this staff member will continue to investigate and identify ways to implement creative problem solving and teamwork skills and tools in the classroom, and teach students how they can use these life-skills on the job, in college, and at home. (reference Specialist Recommendation) b) Training a limited number of county-wide trainers to support the teaching/incorporation of these skills and tools into the curriculum—logic problem and strategic games training and creative problem solving tools and skills (Model School program). Teach faculty and staff how to integrate creative problem solving (CPS) into the classroom -- through instruction in teaching techniques and curriculum activities
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2020 Vision: “Changing the Face of Education in Fayette County” Work Group: Critical Thinking, Chess, and Strategic Games Critical Thinking to Enhance Learning subcommittee
Implementation Steps for Recommendation #1 Elements of Concern Person Responsible for Completing Step Possible Resources?

Action item 1: A. Strengthen elements of strategic thinking and CPS in curriculum/classroom.

Fayette County Schools curriculum experts, professors of education from local colleges, teachers, principals

Make resources available to the teaching staff and encourage the staff to incorporate more logic, strategic thinking, and creative problem solving tools and skills into the classroom—in all curriculums.

Funding concerns

Many of the tools, skills and techniques are available with little or no cost via Internet education websites. Possible purchase of some supplemental curriculum elements.

C. Offer a rotating “special” or elective to specifically teach students how to solve logic problems, strategies for thinking games, and creative problem solving and teamwork tools and skills.

Principals

Offer a ‘Critical Thinking Skills and Tools’ rotating “special” to elementary and middle school students; an elective for high school students. This “special” involves teaching of logic problems, strategic games, and creative problem-solving/teamwork tools. As part of the class, students have free time for free-play of logic and strategic games, and CPS/teamwork skills.

Funding Concerns

Many resources can be procured for little or no money via the Internet. Logic problems and strategic games are inexpensive. CPS tools and skills can be taught via Internet resources,

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appropriate books, and other resources. Established education-based creative problem solving programs may include classroom-based curriculum elements, available with the program materials of some programs (Future Problem Solvers, Odyssey of the Mind, Destination Imagination). D. Community involvement via a game club and an after-school CPS program. Parents, community members, and/or staff can lead either game/CPS club. Principals, school faculty/staff, PTA/PTO, interested parents, community Encourage parent and community involvement, as well as students interested in pursuing strategic games and creative problem solving/teamwork skills and activities - -by offering after-school activities such as Games Club or a CPS program. A parent/community member could lead a Game Club. Parent/community-led after-school CPS club – for students interested in pursing CPS. These students, along with parent, teacher and/or community volunteers, will form student teams who will prepare for tournament competition. CPS Program Choices include: • Future Problem Solvers (Educational Standards included) • Odyssey of the Mind (Fact sheet and organizational information included) • Destination Imagination (materials on specific Curriculum/Educational Standards and Program Guide enclosed) Costs Fayette County Schools and/or Local Schools Other possible funding sources include PTA/PTO or corporate sponsors.

• Purchase membership for each school. • Costs vary by program—see document below the chart.
Each membership provides copyrighted curriculum and educational materials (for use both in and out of school), challenges, and guides to help educators and parent learn about and teach creative problem solving.

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• Train one staff member in creative problem solving skills and tools; as well as how to teach teamwork. • Dispersing materials to CPS-trained educators and faculty. • Schools supply basic materials for classroom integration. • School and/or private funds pay for parent/Team Manager training, as needed. • School and/or private funds pay for tournament fee for teams representing school at the tournament.
Approximate Cost: see pages 24-28. A membership typically allows each school to send team(s) to the local tournament. If available, training faculty, staff, and volunteer parent/community team managers: fees vary, contact local sponsoring organizations: Future Problem Solving www.kaac.com/fps/fps.html Odyssey of the Mind http://kycreative.mis.net Destination Imagination www.ky-di.org Resources Local school library • Purchase resource materials for use by Critical Thinking Skills and Tools educator, faculty, and involved parents/community. • Add a rotating module into the schedule of student “special” such as band, etc. This class would be taught by an educator trained in Critical Thinking Skills and Tools. • Provide location and/or support after-school CPS club for students wishing to form teams and present challenge solution at local tournament. Assessment District Assessment Coordinator • Determine the assessment criteria for this program. • Implement assessment for the program after each year.
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Implementation

Principals

Action Item 2: A. Provide and train a Fayette County Schools staff member to be expert or consultant for strategic games and creative problem solving. Reference Specialist Recommendation. This staff member will train educators, oversee and support these programs, and stay current with all aspects of teaching students these skills. In addition, this staff member will continue to investigate and identify ways to implement creative problem solving and teamwork skills and tools in the classroom, and teach students how they can utilize these life-skills on the job, in college, and at home. Costs

Fayette County Schools

Involves hiring or training a full- or part-time staff member who would be trained in and remain the county expert on all aspects of teamwork, logic, creative, critical, and strategic thinking.

B. Training a limited number of county-wide trainers to support the teaching and incorporation of these skills and tools into the curriculum —strategic games training and creative problem solving tools and skills (Model School program). Teach faculty and staff how to integrate creative problem solving (CPS) into the classroom -- through instruction in teaching techniques and curriculum activities

Options

Only aware of one program which trains teachers in CPS and teamwork skills for incorporation into classroom curriculum. Destination Imagination Model School Program (brochure included), which has been implemented in school systems across the country – Orchard Park, NY for 4-5 years; Currently a school system in Louisiana is in its 2nd Model School year. “Destination ImagiNation, Inc. offers our Model School Program–“Empowering Excellence”–to teachers around the world. This Program is designed to empower teachers to seek excellence in education by engaging students in creative and critical thinking. Additionally, it is designed to train teachers to see the benefits of teaching creatively. Today’s world offers a variety of challenges and opportunities to our students. To better prepare them for the future, educators must guide them to generate and examine multiple options and to help them learn how to turn challenges into opportunities. Our Model School Program teaches educators a variety of creative problem-solving tools that can be used to generate options and focus toward solutions. These tools are explained, discussed and analyzed so educators understand how to use these tools to enhance their teaching and their students’ learning. Students learn to solve problems in a variety of ways

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as they use these thinking tools. These techniques and tools increase retention and are fully aligned with state and national standards, providing you with obvious and measurable results to meet Annual Yearly Progress targets.” Funding Fayette County Schools Cost: $5000 for 2-day training from Destination Imagination for 25 educators. These trained educators then go out and train others in the school system; $2500 per each additional day. Follow-up training: $1500 per day for 25 people. Additional Resource Materials: Variable, according to school needs

Arrange for Faculty training(s)

Fayette County Schools

Initial training: Train 25 educators that will then go out into the school system to train other faculty and staff. Ongoing in-service trainings: The trained educators share training tips and techniques with faculty and staff during ongoing staff development days throughout the school year.

Implementation of CPS skills in classroom Assessment

Local Schools

• Teachers integrate CPS skills into their specific curriculum.

District Assessment Coordinator

• Determine the assessment criteria for this program. • Implement assessment for the program after each year.

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Educationally Based CPS Student Program Costs
And included program components
Based on information from organization website or online brochures. All programs offer additional resource materials for purchase. Future Problem Solving KY Sponsoring Organization:

http://www.kaac.com/fps/fps.html

Costs per KY sponsoring website: Community Problem Solving: The registration fee is only $50 per team. Each registered team receives a packet of materials to aid them in their project. Additional materials can be purchased through International FPSP. Scenario Writing: Entry fee per student is required (each student may submit only one scenario). 1 - 3 Students = $30.00 per student 4 - 6 Students = $25.00 per student 7 - 10 Students = $20.00 per student 11 or more Students = $15.00 per student Junior Division FPS: The registration fee is $50 for the first team and $25 for each additional team a school registers. Individual FPS Competition: • $35 entry fee per student • An evaluator is required for each school entering the event (evaluations will be conducted through the mail.) • Earnest FPS students, capable of working alone • The three event Governor's Cup limit does not apply to students in individual FPS • Individual competition is subject to the same rules as team booklets: write in pencil or pen in the booklet provided; dictionary and thesaurus, and calculator allowed.

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Costs per national website (appear to be resource materials): 2005-06 Readings, Research and Resources Summaries of hundreds of articles which look at the topics from multiple viewpoints. Includes questions for discussion, terms, definitions and a list of resources, including Web sites. A must have in preparing for this year's topics. $36 Student Guide Workbook Use independently or with the Coach's Handbook. This workbook introduces generating and focusing tools and guides students through the sixstep problem solving process. Each section contains explanations and examples. $4 Problem Solving Across the Curriculum Over 100 fuzzies/future scenes.. Shows how to write problem situations for curriculum topics. Includes examples of problems used by teachers in the classroom. Also shows step-by-step how to solve the problems, while focusing on the curriculum topic. $30 Action-Based Problem Solving Teacher's Manual Action-based Problem Solving is the problem solving component designed specifically for the regular classroom. AbPS introduces the classroom teacher and students to creative problem solving and higher-level thinking and action skills in a hands-on, non-threatening manner. Authentic learning situations engage students in meaningful work. $30 2005-06 Readings, Research and Resources Summaries of hundreds of articles which look at the topics from multiple viewpoints. Includes questions for discussion, terms, definitions and a list of resources, including Web sites. A must-have in preparing for this year's topics. $36 Q & A for Readings, Research & Resources Almost 1,000 questions and answers from information in the Readings, Research, and Resources book. On card stock, suitable for cutting into flash cards or leaving intact. Invaluable supplement to RR&R. $27

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Odyssey of the Mind KY Sponsoring Organization: Costs per international website:

http://kycreative.mis.net

Membership Costs: A member may be a school, a recognized community group, or a college or university. A membership fee is $135 (U.S.). With each membership, you receive:
• • • • • • • • •

Five long-term problems that are challenging, user-friendly, and cover a wide variety of subjects. One non-competitive primary problem, designed to introduce younger students to creative problem solving. An Odyssey of the Mind Program Guide, which provides coaching information, rules, sample spontaneous problems and more! The Odyssey of the Mind Newsletter, a quarterly publication loaded with valuable program information. The opportunity to enter official competitions. A chance to attend the annual World Finals. The opportunity to win educational scholarships. All mailings and program updates. Support services from International Headquarters.

Membership Savings: You'll receive the following discounts if you purchase more than one membership:
• • •

Each additional membership for the same school or community group @ $100 6-10 members from the same school district (registered at the same time) @ $120 11 or more members from the same school district (registered at the same time) @ $100

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Destination Imagination KY Sponsoring Organization:

www.ky-di.org

Each year teams of two to seven members select one of five competitive Challenges, focused on 5 areas: Technical/Mechanical Design, Structural/Architectural Design, Theatrical/Literary/Fine Arts, Scientific Exploration, Improvisation. With the guidance – but not help – of a Team Manager (who serves as facilitator, not coach), the team creates an action plan and works together to create everything needed for their Presentation. Costs per international website www.shopdi.org

Individual Membership or 1-pak: $100 An Individual Membership allows a school, school program, college, university, military, community group, boy scout, girl scout, 4-H club, PTA/PTO, home school program, parent group, or business to put together a team of no more than seven participants and to register one team. Single team registrations with no affiliation to any group are also accepted. This membership would entitle a given team participation in one Challenge at any level defined within our program structure. There are no restrictions on how a team is selected or assembled. Team members may come from within a community . . . or beyond. 5-pak Membership: $175 5-Pak Team Membership: A team-based registration that allows up to five teams in any Challenge on any level of competition. A 5-Pak can be purchased for an individual school, multiple schools with a total registration of less than 500 students, multi-school programs with a single itinerant teacher, or a recognized community organization that serves children such as, Boy Scout Troops and Girl Scout Troops, 4-H clubs, PTA/PTOs. 5-Paks may not be purchased on behalf of school districts, states, provinces, program Affiliates, Girl/Boy Scouts of America nor any larger parent organization. Memberships may be held by a local or community entity within the parent organization as described above. Program Materials include: - 5 Team Challenges for 2005-06 - 1 Rising Stars!(R) Team Challenge – non-competitive for younger students - Rules of the Road - Team Manager Guide - Parent Guide - Coordinator Guide - 10 Instant Challenges - Charting Your Course Guide
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- Standards Alignment Guide Other Attached Resource Materials: Program materials, educational standards, and/or brochures from Future Problem Solving Odyssey of the Mind Destination Imagination Information on Model School Program

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