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Loewy tells Tunghai students to put on their ThinkingCAPS

Monday, March 10 - Tunghai University students met to listen to guest speaker Gideon Loewy as he covered many aspects about the brain and mind – creativity and intelligence. Gideon Loewy is the founder of The ThinkingCAPS Institute for Integrated and Holistic Thinking, and of The C-Spot Creativity Centre. Loewy visited in hope for students to become more mindful, in other words to be more conscious of your unconscious and learn thinking. “Its still an area of more speculation than knowledge.” His main purpose was to make students aware that are many different ways and levels of thinking.

The “C-Spot” lecture presented the brain and mind, and thinking skills as a set of models that can be used as a guide to relearning to think for yourself. Students were told about the 4 different aspects of Thinking: Intelligence, Creativity, Design and Action. Contrary to common belief these thinking skills are not fixed but can be developed by awareness, education and practice. He demonstrated to students the whole range of brainwork, like intelligence, creativity, design and action and also which mode of thinking you should use at any point.

Gideon Loewy had a fun and fascinating introduction of the structured Left Brain (IQ) and the synthesizing Right Brain (EQ), the executive Mind (Consciousness & Conscience) & the executing Body centered in the C-Spot (Creativity HotSpot). He kicked off his presentation by stating that, “One of the biggest mistakes about mind and creativity that people believe today is that we have one part of the mind that is rational and the other is full of ideas and it’s absolute rubbish.” His PowerPoint provided students with different models that explained the functionality of the brain and how it works.

Theories that reflect the variety of ways in which humans think, learn, and adapt to their environment were initiated in the early 1980s in the United States. The most systemic theories of intelligence that Gideon Loewy covered were “left brain - mind - right brain”, “reptilian – limbic – cortex”(Paul McLean) governing lateral Fit (De Bono) and linear Flow (Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi). Numerous Venn diagrams were used to help demonstrate Robert Sternberg’s Triarchic Thinking, Howard Gardner’s Multiple Intelligence and Hans Joas’s Action Theory Creativity. These models were displayed to tie the connection to better understand the principles (concepts) to generate ideas (ideation), which overall develop Plans (design) that help execute Projects (production).

Loewy caught their attention when he stated that Taiwanese students have no self-confidence, “Everyone has their own opinions, everybody can think, they just don’t think in class.”

When we are young, we have not learned how to control our thinking. Instead we learn the skills that are needed to succeed in the education system. For example, once we have learned how to ride a bike we never think about how to keep our balance again. It is the same for thinking. “They (Taiwanese students) learn the skills needed to succeed in the education system in Taiwan but what we need to learn is to trust our own thinking and to not reproduce other peoples’ lessons.”

“The focus is not on learning but on memorizing what we are taught.” Loewy stressed that in order to learn we need to understand first, and that requires thinking; a skill that has become so rusty by the time we get to college that using it is scary: it gets in the way of passing exams. Thinking needs time to reflect, which is “slow thinking” and to repeat is reflexive, which is “fast thinking”.

Loewy provided a new inspiration for students to think about, clarify and define their own ideas of concepts in order to achieve “Better Futures, Better Life for a Better World”. After listening, Tunghai University students can quickly become better at thinking and see better results of their work and maybe even in their life.

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