Educators from kindergarten through college often stress the importance of teaching critical thinking within all academic content areas (Foundation for Critical Thinking, 2007, 2013). As indicated by the position statements of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, high quality mathematics education before the first grade should use curriculum and teaching practices that strengthen children’s problem-solving and reasoning processes as well as representing, communicating, and connecting mathematical ideas” The joint position statement of NAEYC and the National Council of” (NAEYC & NCTM [2002] 2010, 3). Through the educational and academic institutions critical thinking is identified as an important outcome for achieving the higher orders of learning upon successful completion of a course, a promotion, or a degree (Humphreys, 2013; Jenkins & Cutchens, 2011). Although there are numerous definitions of critical thinking, the authors have selected the definition by Scriven & Paul, 2008 as “the intellectually disciplined process of actively and skillfully conceptualizing, applying, synthesizing, and/or evaluating information gathered from, or generated by, observation, experience, reflection reasoning, or communication as a guide to belief and action” (Scriven & Paul, 2008). Instructors should teach problem solving within the context of mathematics instruction and engage students in critical thinking by thoughtful questions with discussion of alternative results. Teaching preschool children to problem solve and engage in critical thinking in the context of mathematics instruction requires a series of thoughtful and informed decisions.

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