Book Review The Thinking Toolbox

25 06 2005

Title: The Thinking Toolbox – Thirty-Five Lessons That Will Build Your Reasoning Skills

Author: Nathaniel Bluedorn & Hans Bluedorn with Illustrations by Richard LaPierre

Publisher: Christian Logic

Disclaimer: I was not paid to provide this review. All I received was a complimentary copy of the book.

The Thinking Toolbox is a wonderful and refreshing book. It touts itself as a resource for ages 13 and up on logic and is a companion to The Fallacy Detective (which I haven’t read.) This books takes you step by step through the logic process in a series of chapters followed by exercises. While this book easily could have become mundane, the chapters are short and the exercises engaging.

Here is a rundown of the content:

Tools for Thinking lessons set up the basic ground rules for their logic progression. Some of the things encountered include identifying the differences between a discussion, a disagreement, an argument and a fight. (I didn’t really understand the difference.) Also things like the differences between facts and opinions, premises and conclusion and when logic cannot be applied.

Tools for Opposing Viewpoints could be a course in mystery writing 101. The section clearly builds the logic necessary to analyze situations and discover truth.

Tools for Science explains the scientific method in simple terms. Each lesson walks you through the process of the critical thinking needed to “prove” a hypothesis.

Projects has some fun games to help you show off your new logic skills.

Overall, the book would be a great tool for a parent to work on thinking with a child. It may even be useful for children under age 13 (who actually may have a greater interest in this line of thinking.) The examples and exercises were fun and suspenseful. The book is also full of great illustrations that represent the material well. Also remember that the authors are Christians. The occasional Biblical reference is not overbearing, but a refreshing reminder of how things should be in a learning book.

Sal’s Final Word
A really fun book – a far cry from the last two books I’ve reviewed. I look forward to hanging onto this one and using it with my son when he’s old enough.

One small negative point, their are a lot of time-dated references throughout the book, thing relevant to this place in time. Since it will be a few years until I use it with my children, I will be anxious to see how some of these references hold up.

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One response

26 06 2005
Kim in ON

Thanks for this, Sal!

My daughter did the Fallacy Detective, and enjoyed it very much. My 13yo is going to start logic this year.

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