You’ve done some of it anyway. The remarks about reversing things at least indicates that to me. Critical thinking has a lot to do with being able to identify and analyze the critical assumption. The critical assumption is the one that exposes the dependencies which enable some solution. You do a good job of contrasting critical thinking with simply reacting to problems or stimuli. Unfortunately most college texts, especially math texts, do not make this distinction. Students are told to ‘play with it’ or ‘study harder’, not how to think critically.