Phone: (781) 659-0513
Email: info@thinkinganddoingskillscenter.com
Address: 11C Whiting Street – Hingham, MA 02043
What Is a Thinking Skill?

What Is a Thinking Skill?

To “think” is to use your mind actively to connect thoughts, ideas and facts together to generate new ones. Using Bloom’s redesigned taxonomy as a guide we can see that thinking begins with the ability to “remember” and develops through several stages to “creating.” These stages are called higher order thinking skills. They are the skills we use every day jto problem solve, and think critically. They are also the skills that students will be asked to demonstrate using the Common Core of knowledge on the PARCC test. To be able to get to the highest level of create, we need certain skills: A strong working memory (or a reliable way to help it) Ability to interpret information Make inferences Compare and contrast Ask questions Look for new connections Analyze information Think “outside the box” Become an active learner Think about your thinking Take chances and don’t be afraid of failure We all have areas we are stronger in than others. Here are some of the executive function skills that can impact your ability to think and create. Can you see how difficulty with any of these skills can hinder your ability? Getting started – are you getting the things that need to be done, done? Focus – can you work long enough with enough attention to detail to finish accurately? Inhibit – are you impulsive? Monitor – do you see how your actions affect others? Cognitive flexibility – do you get stuck in your thinking or continue to do things the same way expecting a different result? Working memory – forget what you are doing or how to...
Is It a Pineapple or a Banana?

Is It a Pineapple or a Banana?

Ever wonder why certain things don’t seem to get done? Whether it is the laundry, a report at work, or a project your child is struggling with, there is one major reason. It is because it is a “pineapple!” Let me explain. If you were hungry and in a hurry as we often are, which fruit would you chose for a snack, a pineapple or a banana? You would probably pick the banana because it is easy to grab and eat, and only takes a second to unwrap before you are enjoying it. The pineapple, on the other hand, has to be peeled, cored and chopped before it is ready to eat. The banana is a “task” and the pineapple is a “project”. Do you see the difference? This is not my idea but comes from the book, Stop Organizing Start Producing, by Casey Moore. Here’s a link to a video she posted explaining it. Now, if the pineapple was already chopped and ready to eat, which do you think you would pick? The choices are now more equal and you can pick by preference. If the things on your “to do” list are simple, one step tasks, then they are more likely to get done (and it feels so good to cross things off, doesn’t it)? Now if your project was in bite sized pieces do you think you might be more inclined to work on it? School projects often come with implicit directions and unless your teen is capable of breaking it down into individual steps…..or should I say unless your teen can actually see the project...
5 Key Study Skills for Teens

5 Key Study Skills for Teens

With all the snow days of the past few weeks, it may be hard for students to remember the information they have previously learned. Here are some basics to pass along to your teen. A great place to start is to take some time to review class notes before heading back to school. Of course, 1. Chunk down the information into manageable pieces and create an outline or a mind map (web) with key concepts as you learn new information and as a review for previously learned material. The brain remembers color, shapes, placement, words and numbers in that order so anytime you can use those things to add to your mind map or notes you are helping your brain remember. Review by covering up a section and repeating. For you auditory learners, you can use a digital recorder or create an mp3 of your notes and play it back.if your teen’s test scores have recently been declining, you may want them to join our Study Skills 2.0 class on February 19, 2015 at 1pm. Register here: http://southshorelearninglab.com/classes/study-skills-2-0/ held at the South Shore Learning Lab, 683 Main Street, Norwell, Ma. (Next class during April vacation week) 2. Study in 30-45 minute blocks and take a 3-5 minute break to allow your brain to process the new information. Then continue. 3. Studying is not about rereading…interact somehow with the information. Ask yourself questions, group facts together, draw a timeline, etc. 4. Don’t cram, it doesn’t work. Space out your studying/reviewing over the week and do a short review of the topics covered each day and then continue on with your...

15 Strategies to Get Things Done

AD/HD can effect both children and adults. The true challenge is the amount of impact that it has on someone’s ability to handle life’s responsibilities and that is important to be aware of. The impact may be interfering at home, work, school, or in social situations.  Often it is the executive functioning skills (or central control of the brain) that interferes with a person’s ability to focus, organize, plan, keep emotions under control and/or accomplish tasks. Executive functions skills are defined as: The executive functions are a set of processes that all have to do with managing oneself and one’s resources in order to achieve a goal. It is an umbrella term for the neurologically-based skills involving mental control and self-regulation. Taken from:Joyce Cooper-Kahn and Laurie Dietzel (2008) http://www.ldonline.org/article/29122/ Here are just three of the top executive functioning skills and strategies to help handle them. The links are to blog posts I wrote with more information. 1. Task Initiation – or Getting Started Declutter your work space, set up materials you use often in easily accessible places. Get help understanding what is expected (call a friend or coworker). Break it down into smaller pieces and pick one piece to start. Visual timers, alarms, and phone reminders all serve to designate a start time if you use them. Start with the easiest to build momentum. 2. Memory – often called working memory or the ability to hold onto information while using it. Write it down! Use a planner, smartphone app (Google Calendar, Color note,Evernote, Remember the Milk, Hiveminder, etc.), or notepad to keep track Repeat out loud what you want to remember Simplify and slow down. (Multitasking reduces...
Make 2015 Your Year

Make 2015 Your Year

Only a few days left in January…..if you made a New Year’s resolution or set a new goal, research says you may have given up by now. Has that happened to you? We all start off with good intentions but then somehow we slip back into our “old” ways. Without realizing it our habits take over and by the time we realize it, we’ve slipped. What if you had a way to interrupt those ingrained habits? You see the problem with trying to do the same thing is that the same problems appear. If it is a new habit we are trying to create then motivation can be hard to find sometimes, or we don’t have what we need, or life interrupts and something else becomes more urgent (notice I didn’t say more important).  Has that ever happened to you? The result is a slow and steady draining of your energy whether you realize it or not. Without understanding why that resolution or new goal is important to you, you are only seeing the fact that you didn’t do “x”. You are not seeing the big picture of how accomplishing that goal is going to make you feel, or what affect it will have on you and your family. You only see that you didn’t do it. In coaching we say that you are losing sight of the “big agenda” which simply put is who you are becoming. Why did you pick that resolution or goal? Who do you have to become to realize it? No matter how big your “why” is, you can improve your odds of accomplishing...