Youth are confronted daily with situations where they must exercise their best judgments and react to the world around them.
When youth lack critical thinking and listening skills, they often expect others to make the right decisions for them and tend to go along with their peers and friends without thinking through the issues themselves. Not only can this lead to kids getting caught up in bad behavior, but it also allows them to make excuses for their actions.
Critical thinking skills allow youth to make decisions based on how they will impact other people. Without this skill, youth do whatever is necessary to be successful at the expense and feelings of others and can become manipulators of other people. This can often lead to bullying and poor peer relationships.
The ability of youth to think and listen critically allows them to not believe everything they hear and ask questions, think through how their decisions impact themselves and others and motivates them to try to understand other people and community issues that surround them.