We Critical thinking for our life and how a


We opened this paper by noting the importance of
Critical thinking for our life and how a teacher can build this capacity in his
students. Having implemented a critical language activity to the available
class of unaccompanied minors in the open refugee hosting structure of Elaionas (Athens) we recognize that it is impossible to
generalize the findings based on one classroom visit and the implemented
critical language activity that have been gathered from a single sample. In
contrast to that it must be taken into account that both the material used and
the critical language activity that has been implemented for the students had
been prepared by the researcher with the great contribution of his colleague, a
fact which means that under other conditions maybe the results would be
differentiated. Although, it is evident that the aforementioned critical
activity is not only a pleasant experience but also an educational and collaborative
learning opportunity which triggers both the teacher and the students and
engages them into a question – answer pattern in order to adopt a critical
attitude towards the world (Freire, 1970).

In the present study the reading of the book titled
“the blackbird and the white seagull” was a valuable learning and educational
experience for students. The text combined with such a lively, immediate and
interesting storytelling way has attracted both the interest and attention of
the students from the first moment and activated their imagination, emotions,
critical thinking as well as it has offered them learning motivations. Almost
all of the students, even the more doubtful and hesitant were involved in the
process of producing oral and written speech in Greek, English and in their
mother tongue. Furthermore, they were engaged in the process of decoding the
images of the book and they participated in the actively and critically reading
of the text, in order to comprehend what the author described and what
arguments he had put forward (Knight, 2011). The students have been at the center of this
educational process and they have critically explored their sociocultural
background and belies.

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Concurrently, they have realized that the texts are
not neutral but that they represent an ideological approach of the world and
that they use as a tool the mechanisms of language. As Fairclough (2000) has
pointed out, it is inadequate and poor to only teach student to make the “appropriate”
use of language without taking into consideration why that language has been
chosen and who has made this selection. We assume that in this way, was
cultivated the critical thinking of the students within and outside the
classroom environment.

Concerning the feelings and thoughts raised during the
procedure, I would  like to underline
that taking into consideration the reality of the students, their sociocultural
background as well as their age, I have realized that the method we have
followed consisted by questions and answers made even their fear or hesitance
disappear.  I feel glad that I have
participated in this activity, even though when we started to present our
project to the students I was feeling uncomfortable.

All in all, we may argue that the combination of
activities retrieved from Critical pedagogy with the educational action creates
the conditions of great implementation of critical thinking and of critical
activities in our everyday life and in our future occupations.