The effect of learning styles on the critical thinking skills in natural science learning of elementary school students

Marleny Leasa, Aloysius Duran Corebima, John Rafafy Batlolona

Abstract


Elementary school students being concrete operational development have the opportunity to trigger the higher-order thinking processes, including critical thinking. The context of VARK learning styles refers to the elements of modalities that are classified into visual, auditory, read, and kinesthetic styles. This research was conducted to examine the effect of learning styles on critical thinking skills (CTS) of elementary school students in Ambon-Maluku. The instrument of CTS rubric was developed from the Delphi consensus. The results of this research showed that learning styles (LS) did not have any significant effect on CTS. The differences in how to receive and to process information in learning is not a determining factor of the development of CTS. This research recommends that teachers need to be specifically trained to teach CTS. Moreover, it is necessary to create a constructivist learning environment using learning strategies or learning models that could potentially develop the students’ skills of interpretation, analysis, inference, evaluation, and explanation. Further research is required to examine the effect of learning strategies, age, and students' learning experience on the development of students’ thinking skills.


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