## “The Six Thinking Hats”: Learning to Learn More

Six Thinking Hats is a problem-solving system designed by Edward de Bono, a psychologist, author, and consultant who pioneered the technique in his book Six Thinking Hats. It is a tool for group discussion and individual thinking involving six colored hats. “Six Thinking Hats” and the associated idea of parallel thinking provide a means for groups to plan thinking processes in a detailed and cohesive way, and in doing so to think together more effectively.

## How it was used in “English Reading” and “Presentation Skills” Classes

Students formed six teams. Six distinct directions were identified and assigned a color. For the reading and presentation classes students were given an article published by the New York Times about the launch of “the cash-free supermarkets” inspired by the Amazon Go stores. To make this case more appealing, our students imagined as if their favorite on-campus supermarket (named *Kasumi*) was about to become cashless, same as the Amazon Go store. Each team then tried to look at this problem. They wore their distinct “hats” and sought to look at the issue through the lens of their “thinking hat”.

**(1) Blue Hat (Process). ****Asked:** What kind of problem do we face? What do we want to achieve? How do we solve this problem?

**(2) White Hat (Facts). ****Asked:** What do we know about this problem? What don’t we know about this problem? What’s significant about all these facts?

**(3) Red Hat (Feelings and Emotions). ****Asked:** What do we (I) feel about it? Do we feel this is the right choice to make? What is my gut telling me right now?

**(4) Black Hat (Cautious/ Skeptical). ****Asked:** What is the fatal flaw in this idea? How many ways is this likely to fail? What are the risks associated with this?

**(5) Yellow Hat (The Positive Side / Optimistic). ****Asked:** Why is this a great idea? What opportunities could evolve from this? How can we realistically make this work?

**(6) Green Hat (Creativity): ****Asked:** What’s a unique way of looking at this? What’s a more efficient solution to this? What are the possibilities if we try…?

Here is how our teams visually expressed their assumptions and statements.