Keywords: cluster, critical thinking, methodology, technique, training, history, social science.
The main goal of the second-generation Federal State Educational Standard 1 is the formation of a “new” personality, which should be able to search for information, select sources of information, and be critical of the search for new knowledge. All methods of developing critical thinking allow the teacher to make their lesson unusual, interesting, and memorable.
When developing a student using the technology of critical thinking, there must be three main components, stages of development: Challenge; Comprehension; Reflection. At the first stage, a problem arises, the teacher involves all children in the work, they reproduce the knowledge they already have on the topic, form an associative array, ask questions that need to be answered. At the second stage, the stage of comprehension, pupils work with information, read texts. They consider pictures, solve examples and problems, analyze the facts obtained in the course of this. At the stage of reflection, children independently analyze the knowledge gained, draw conclusions 3.
One of the techniques of critical thinking technology is a «cluster» — a graphical diagram of interconnected semantic units, the main goal of which is to systematize material on a specific topic 4. The cluster can be used in the study of any topic and at any stage of the lesson, for setting the topic, used in the lesson process, periodically filling it, also in the form of reflection. The compilation of the cluster proceeds according to one model, the basis is the word, which is the main idea of the lesson, in different directions from the central term there is additional information related in meaning, the search by which the students carry out, in parallel explaining why he chose this particular term or phrase.
The following types of clusters can be distinguished:
- Classic — the most common type of cluster, the main term is written on the board in the center, students draw arrows and write down words that, in their opinion, are related to the central term, you can use it in studying any topic in social science, for example, when studying culture, economics, the political structure of the state, etc.
- The reverse — the principle of using this type is a little complicated, first the terms related to the main topic are written down, and the question is posed, and the students must determine the central word, this type of cluster can be used for setting a new topic, or to repeat previously learned material.
- Paper — has a more creative approach, students receive pre-prepared cards on which terms and phrases on the topic under study are written, they need to study the material provided on their own (this can be either the text of a paragraph or a separately prepared passage) and arrange the cards in that order, in which they consider it necessary, to carry out a check to assimilate the information, propose to make a cluster together on the board, sticking cards in turn in the right place.
- 4.Cluster with word numbering — used in the case when it is necessary to determine the sequence of any processes, it is better to carry it out together, from the central word to distribute the numbered events based on the sequence, this type of cluster is best used in history lessons, where it is important to remember the sequence of events.
- Art cluster (with pictures) — such a cluster is best used when working with grades 5–8, where a picture is located in the center, and students need to depict concepts related in meaning, a creative approach helps to interest students in the topic lesson and facilitates the assimilation of educational material.
- Subject art cluster — an object is indicated in the center, students need to choose pictures that are most suitable in meaning and stick them (for example, when studying feudal society, make a cluster of this type along the feudal ladder).
- Group — a feature of this cluster is the compilation of different clusters on one topic, (for example, when studying the topic «culture», one group makes up the cluster «spiritual culture», and the other «material culture», ready-made clusters are located around the main topic, when studying history, you can approach more creatively, for example, the main theme is «Life of primitive people», the first group is a cluster of «hunting», the second is «gathering», and the third is «religion», each group must creatively present its cluster, writing a short story on its topic.
The form of working with the technique of the cluster can be different, both individual and group, it can be performed in the classroom, used as homework, it is worth noting that then it should have been applied at least once in the classroom in the lesson, the student must already have ideas, how to do it. Students should not be afraid to express their opinion, to accept any student's answer on the topic under study, the main recommendation for the teacher, in the process of compiling a cluster, together come to a conclusion that is more suitable for this topic.
The use of a cluster has the following advantages:
— it allows you to cover a large amount of information;
— involves all team members in the learning process, they are interested in it;
— children are active and are open, because they have no fear of making a mistake, making a wrong judgment.
In the course of this work, the following skills are formed and developed:
— the ability to pose questions;
— highlight the main thing;
— establish causal relationships and build inferences;
— move from particulars to the general, understanding the problem as a whole;
— compare and analyze;
— draw analogies...
Cluster, as a technique for developing critical thinking technology, is very practical, it helps students learn to find basic information on a topic and systematize it, many students face the problem of inability to extract important information, find causal relationships, which is subsequently reflected not only at work with the text, but also at the formation of the oratory skills of students, the cluster technique forms consciousness and develops thinking, teaches children to generalize information and draw conclusions on the topic.
Of the disadvantages of working with a cluster, the following can be distinguished: using this technique in grades 5–6, it can cause a violation of discipline, because students are not yet ready for group activities, have not learned to listen to each other, everyone wants to stand out and show themselves to a greater extent, therefore, it is worth introducing this technique into work gradually.
- Nikitina A. V. Cluster as one of the forms of cognitive activity of students // Young Scientist. — 2016. — No. 17.1. — P. 20–31 [Electronic resource] URL: https://moluch.ru/archive/121/33512/ (date of access 04.09.2021).
- Federal state educational standards for general education. [Electronic resource] URL: http://minobrnauki.rf/ (date of treatment 03.09.2021).
- Miroshnichenko L. Yu. Cluster method in the technology of developing critical thinking in the classroom in primary school // Young scientist. — 2017. — No. 3.1. — S. 41–43. — [Electronic resource] URL: https://moluch.ru/archive/137/38305/ (date of access 04.09.2021).