One of my favorite observations from teaching undergraduate critical thinking (as I noted in my last post) is that even though students claim to, they often don’t know what educators mean by "critical thinking." Even so, there is a tendency for students to nod their heads in agreement with whatever educators say, because hey, no one wants to look foolish! We see this behavior quite often in the classroom.
Nothing. Not a single hand. Maybe, there genuinely are no questions. However, in larger classrooms, with over 100 people, this is probably not the case—there’s bound to be at least one question. In my opinion, if a student has a question, it makes them look smarter to ask it. It is in their interest to do so, particularly if they don’t understand what is being discussed. Still, questions often go unasked, perhaps, because of shyness or uncertainty. When hands do go up, there are generally very few of them. No one wants to stand out and look like they don’t get it, especially if no one else is raising their hand. Thus, some might just be sitting there, still wondering, “What do you mean by critical thinking?”