1. Lessons one De Bono’s ‘Six Thinking Hats’

Analysing film can be very confusing as each scene involves a multiple sensory experience, which basically means, there is alot going on! Organising how we look at films into some sort of structure can be a useful way of breaking down the bombardment of images, sound and thoughts going on as a result of watching media.

A thinking tool, is like any other tool that is used to aid whatever process is going on. For example a car mechanic uses tools to help fix a car, a gardener uses various tools to do his work in the garden and so on…

I thought it would be useful for us to use a thinking tool such as the one below – Edward de Bono’s Six Thinking Hats – to provide a structure to our viewing,and to allow us to focus on a particular way of thinking at any given time.

Edward de Bono designed the Six Thinking Hats as a tool to assist the decision making process. He believes that when the thinker has to deal with a wide range of information and perspectives at once, the thinker loses focus and thinking becomes muddled. To help separate information and perspectives De Bono created a tool called the Six Thinking Hats with each hat being a different colour. By separating and focusing upon parts of the problem, the thinker will be able to make clear choices.

This structured approach to thinking has been very successful in the business world:

Six Thinking Hats is a time-tested tool that boosts creative and innovative performance. It provides a framework to focus and broaden thinking by separating out six different ingredients in thinking: white hat–information, yellow hat–benefits, black hat–risk, green hat–creativity, red hat–gut instinct, and blue hat–process.

Each person uses the same tool, at the same time, on the same challenge–focused parallel thinking. This cleans up the conversation, puts an end to endless debate and discussions that are going nowhere, and saves everyone time.

“Six Hats is a simple, yet powerful tool that can be learned rapidly and used immediately to achieve long-lasting results. Six Hats has helped our product development group to generate ideas quickly, evaluate them efficiently, and implement action plans effectively.” – Laura Donahue, Nestle Click here to read more about using this tool for business

Here is a mind map that further highlights how it can be used in business:

Today we started work on understanding the six different colours and what type of thinking they represent. The idea was that you would realise that they are actually quite easy to work out, as the colour is closely linked to the role that they represent. For example green for creativity because green means growth; red for emotions and feelings as it symbolises danger and love; yellow for positivity as it is sunny and warm; black for caution because it usually signifies death; blue for control of the process because it connotations of cold (when you are in charge of a process, you have to make sure you are in control and not being swayed by emotions! Like teaching for example); white is about facts as it is neutral. The hats are only a metaphor to get you in that mode of thinking as someone pointed out in class today, it is closely related to the old saying ‘get your thinking caps on’. That is exactly what we are doing!

Here is a recap of the lesson we did today (once we had finished watching the film!).  Using colour pencils, the below tables were colour coded with the relevant colour. And as some of you realised, some could fall into more than one category, however, there was always a more dominant colour. For example: number 1. in Task 1 is more obviously under Red Hat thinking, however because it provides an element of caution, it could also be argued as Black Hat thinking.  Click here for the Word documents for this lesson De Bono worksheet lesson 1

Task 1: Below is a set of data. On your own, read each item. Then, with a partner, classify these into the nature of thinking encouraged or represented (blue, red, yellow, green, black and white). When finished, we will share as a class. Note that no right or wrong group exists. Be prepared to share justification for your choice.

1. Whenever I think of maths I   get anxious.
2. The title of the poem is   “My Last Duchess”.
3. Maybe we need to go to   another group to get additional ideas.
4. We do not have enough   evidence to make this decision.
5. Let’s clarify what we now   understand about the problem.
6. It will work because of costs and it solves the problem.

Task 2: Work in pairs and share with class

Red Hat/ White Hat: Green Hat/Black Hat
Which are Red Hat and which   are White Hat? Which are Green Hat   thinking and which are Black?
1. I think it makes me feel   sad. 1. Let’s find two more   reasons before we decide.
2. Your ideas make me   laugh. 2. Can anyone think of any   other solution?
3. We also recycle to raise   money. 3. You didn’t study that is   why you didn’t pass the test.
4. I think the boy got into   trouble for a couple of reasons. 4. If you continue to talk like that you will get in trouble.
5. Your solution to the   problem would make a lot of people happy. 5. That’s a good start. Who   can take it one step further?
6. Those actions make me   feel angry! 6. If you use it that way   someone may get hurt.
7. Please tell me how much   time you think we will save. 7. Could we sit down and   try to find out what is wrong?
8. What are the reasons why   we should recycle? 8. Those were great ideas!   Anymore?

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