Creativity/Problem Solving/Critical Thinking
Lesson Plans and Resources
This page was scanned for broken links and updated on 12-9-23.


The sites listed below provide lesson plans and resources for promoting problem solving, creativity, and critical thinking. Click on a topic from the site index below to find what you need or go to my Gifted and Talented page.

Site Index: problem solving lesson plans, problem solving resources, creativity lesson plans, creativity resources, critical thinking lesson plans, critical thinking resources

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Problem Solving Lesson Plans
Problem Solving Lesson Plan Index
Fourteen lessons for a variety of subjects and grade levels.   

No Quick Fix? Developing Problem-Solving Skills
A lesson plan from the NY Times.

A computer science unit exploring strategies to help students become better problem solvers.

Problem Solving Using Tables
From BrainPOP.  See also Word Problems.

Problem Solving/Holistic Lesson Plan: Paper Structure
A high school for middle school lesson plan.

Lesson - Problem Solving and Critical Thinking
A lesson in which students learn and  use seven steps to solving problems.

Practical Problem-Solving Lesson Plan
This lesson from a nutrition unit requires students to use problem-solving skills to deal with "perennial problems."

The Quandary Game
A lesson plan for grades 6-12 that "centers around a game called Quandary."

Classic Middle-Grades Problems for the Classroom
Students work in groups to solve two classic problems (Mangoes Problem and Sailors and Coconuts) that can be represented and solved in several different ways

Problem Solving: Math, Episode 2
An elementary lesson plan requiring students to explore different ways to find solutions to problems or situations. See also Problem Solving: Math Episode 1.

Working with Environmental Issues
A learning module from the Peace Corps' World Wise Schools. in which students use problem-solving skills to address a real-world problem. It is intended for elementary and middle grade students.

Goldilocks and the Three Bears, Problem and Solution
Lesson ideas from Lightning Strikes.

Creative Problem-Solving with Ezra Jack Keats
A lesson plan for grades K-2.

Problem Solving Resources
Archimedes Laboratory
Puzzles and Mental Activities. See their Teacher's Resources.

Chess Strategies for Beginners: Develop Problem-Solving Skills
See also Chess: A Great Way to Improve Your Child's Analytical and Problem-Solving Skills.

Problem Solving
Definition, behavioral indicators, and proficiency levels from Chicago State University. See also What is Problem Solving.

Big 6 Model
Information and online resources for using this strategy.

The Problem Site
Educational Games - Free math problems, puzzles, word games, brainteasers, and mystery hunts.

Creativity Lesson Plans
The Use of "Substitution" As A Creative Thinking Tool
A lesson plan for grades 1-6.

Teaching Creativity
A lesson plan adaptable to grades pre-K to 6 from Scholastic.

Defining Creativity
A lesson plan in which students "identufy a class definintion of creativity."

Creativity and Creative Thinking
Eleven lesson ideas adaptable to grades K-12 from ThoughtCo.

Active Imagination Lesson Plan: Everyone's Creative
A lesson plan adaptable to a variety of grade levels in which students use their imagination to solve problems and create.

Idea Generation
A lesson plan for grades 6-8.

Creativity Lesson Plan
Lesson ideas for several subject areas from One Community.

Squiggle Stories
A lesson plan for 1st grade requiring creative thinking in story writing. See also squiggle sculpture.

Pourquoi Stories: Creating Tales to Tell Why
A lesson plan for grades 3-5 dealing with stories or folk tales that explain how or why something exists (usually in nature).

Creative Writing through Wordless Picture Books
A lesson plan for grades 6-8.

Create a New Ammendment
A middle grade or high school lesson plan from Education World in which students demonstrate critical thinking and creative thinking skills in developing a new amendment to the Constitution.

Writing Up a Spanish Storm: Using Creative Thinking for Creative Writing
Ideas for an advanced high school Spanish unit. The site also contains quite a bit of background information on creative thinking.

Creative Educator: Science
Several lesson plans, many of which involve creativity.

Color Works
Clasroom art projects that allow students to express their creativity.

Creative Ideas for Science Projects
From EDinformatics.

The Adventures of a Cardboard Box
A lesson plan involving divergent thinking based on a film by the above title.

Puzzle Solving 101: Lesson 9: Lateral Thinking

A lesson plan that helps students "think out of the box."

Creativity is Great
A lesson plan from Great Britain.

Creative Drama Lesson Plans
Many lesson plans sorted by age level.

Crayola Creativity Central
A searchable directory of lesson plans using Crayola products.   

Creative Writing Lesson Plan
See also Five Creative Writing Lesson Plans for Middle and High School Students.

Creativity Activities
Ideas for exploring fluency, flexibility, elaboration, redefinition, and originality.

Creativity Resources
The Creative Teaching Web Site
An excellent site with articles, ideas, and information for developing more creative teachers.

How to Promote Creative Thinking
From Scholastic.

22 Simple Ideas for Promoting Creativity in the Elementary Classroom
From Edutopia.

Ellis Paul Torrence: Father of Modern Creativity
Information about Tirrence and his views on creativity. See also Torrence Framework for Creative Thinking and 3 Examples- Torrence Teats of Creative Thinking.

Creativity and Innovation Rubric
For grades 6-12. See also Creativity and Innovation Rubric (Grades 3-5).

What is Creativity
Many definitions fro California State University, Northridge.

Creativity for Kids
Arts and crafts products.

Handouts on Creativity and Innovation

Critical Thinking Lesson Plans

Remodeled Lesson Plans from the Center for Critical Thinking
See their selection of "remodeled" lesson plans organized by grade level toward the bottom of the left-hand index. For information on the Center's approach to critical thinking, see Our Concept of Critical Thinking.

Critical Thinking Lesson Plans
More than 20 lesson plans from the Leonore Annenberg Institute for Civics.

Critical Thinking and Writing Activities in the Science Classroom
Several ideas for activities.

Developing Students' Critical Thinking Skills through Whole-Class Dialogue
A lesson plan for grades 3-5 from Read-Write-Think.

Critical Thinking
A lesson plan for the intermediate level and above from Macmillan English.

10 Kindergarten Critical Thinking Activities to Inspire their Inner Sherlock Holmes

Teachable  Moment
The latest activities from Teachable Moment, many of which foster critical thinking on current issues.

On the Market: Thinking Critically About Advertising
From the NY Times Learning Network.

Rock or Feather? A Critical-Thinking Activity
From Education World.

Book Sorting: Using Observation and Comprehension to Categorize Books
A primary-grade lesson plan that addresses critical-thinking skills, observation and categorization processes, as well as reading comprehension and writing skills, while at the same time providing teachers with a vast array of diagnostics through observation of student interaction and conversation.

Teaching Mysteries
Several lesson plans, ideas, and online mysteries to teach critical thinking and reading comprehension.

Critical Thinking with Fables New and Old
A lesson plan from Education World adaptable for grades 3-12.

Detective Fiction: Focus on Critical Thinki
A unit for grade 6.

Draft Letters: Improving Student Writing through Critical Thinking
A  high school lesson plan from Read-Write-Think in which students write reflective letters to the teacher, identifying their own thoughts on the piece that the teacher is about to read. See also Developing Students' Critical Thinking Skills Through Whole-Class Dialogue, Analyzing Character Development in Three Short Stories about Women and Lights, Camera, Action . . . Music: Critiquing Films Using Sight and Sound for other high school critical thinking lesson plans from Read-Write-Think.

Critical Thinking Resources
Critical Thinking Value Rubric
See also Higher-Order Thinking Rubric.

Resources and Downloads for Teaching Critical Thinking
Tools, rubrics and lesson plans from Edutopia.

The Critical Thinking Community
Much information and many resources.       

Glossary of Critical Thinking Terms
"An Educator's Guide to Critical Thinking Terms and Concepts."

What is critical thinking?
A tutorial.


E-mail me if you would like help in locating the resources you need. Also, please
let me know if you find a link on this site that no longer functions. My name is
Edmund J. Sass, Ed.D.
You can reach me at

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