The well-known phrase “put your thinking cap on” is believed to have derived from the term ‘considering cap’ firstly in the 17th century. It has been said English judges wore a ‘considering cap’ while pondering a sentence, as respected thinkers it later became known as a thinking cap. Other professions such as scholars wore tight fitting caps and were regarded as intelligent thinkers, an observation which has led people to form ideas surrounding that of hats and thinking being linked.
Edward de Bono introduced the term lateral thinking in the 1960’s, one example of lateral thinking was an exercise he created called six-hat thinking. Each hat is differentiated by colour and represents a different perspective to take towards the problem. They are used as tools to establish a solution to incomplete thinking and to improve communication within a group creating a more collaborative discussion. So what are the six different hats and what do they represent?