CristinaM.

Creatively Speaking…

In Uncategorized on February 13, 2011 at 4:10 pm

My hand is the extension of the thinking process…the CREATIVE process. (Tadao Ando)

 

Creativity pre-exists schooling. Creativity pre-exists textbooks. And even knowledge, as in academic knowledge.

How do we nurture it? How do we make kids aware of their power? How do we do that if we start suffocating them with textbooks, test scores, rules and …and…

Can creativity really bloom in a classroom where everything is set at a specific time and all students are required to do the academic “work”?

 

My 2nd grade students and I tried to change our perspective on creativity. I think it is important, from time to time, to make things more explicit – especially for young learners…So how did I do that?

  1. Presentations/videos to start the discussion

Use the “I used to think…Now I think..” strategy (from ProjectZero)

I used more ways to create the platform for discussion – see below.

*My PPT – I used Mike Oldfield’s track Tubular Bells 

 

VIDEO that inspired me (also shared with the kids)  : 

The student answers below…

Being_creative_5Being_creative_2Being_creative_1Being_creative_3Being_creative_4

2. Powerful quotes

Encourage kids to express their opinion. I used the 4 corners strategy – I strongly agree/I agree/ I strongly disagree/ I disagree.

Einstein

Some answers here…

Einstein_4Einstein_2Einstein_3

3. Ask KIDS about their own creative process

Kids_tips_on_creativity

They share what inspires them…and that can enable others to use the same sources of inspiration.

Kids_tips_3Kids_tips_2

*A student of mine created a Storybird on inspiration and invited me to collaborate. I wrote a single page so she could come up with her  own answers. 🙂


4. Challenge kids’ creativity

Use language, art, science, mathematics…basically, any area of human endeavor.

 

More specific strategies and tips:

1.   “Do  X …as…”  

Example:  Do a poem as a …line/ dance/ collage/ drawing

                Do the addition as a…diagram/drawing/craft piece

 2. Use the “What if?..” question

Example: What if ice cream grew in trees? What if you became invisible? Here is a 1,000 idea-list for what-if strategy! 

http://www.timesaversforteachers.com/index_page0010.htm

3. Use the BAR strategy : 

Make an item Bigger, Add something to it or Replace something. 

4. Use Combination 

List the attributes of two dissimilar objects. Combine all the attributes to make a single object

5. Different uses

Find 10 uses for empty plastic yoghurt containers. (You’ll be amazed at what kids can come up with!)

 6. The prediction 

Predict what X will be like in 10 years. (X being anything at your choice)

7. The Picture

Draw a simple diagram and let students work out how to link it to your topic.

8. The Ridiculous 

Make a ridiculous comment that would be impossible to implement and provoke students to substantiate it .

Example: Houses should be build without roofs.

Possible argument: Indeed, because you can see the beautiful night sky. 

9. Step inside: Perceive – Know- Care about

Students imagine being “inside”a character, object, abstract thing (e.g. the sword on a battlefield, the numerator in a fraction, the window in a story etc)

10. Color, Symbol, Image

Ask students to use a single color, draw a symbol and then an icon for a topic (e.g. global warming).

11. Headlines

Ask students to come up with newspaper headlines to summarize, in a creative way, what they are learning. 

12. Reversed brainstorming

Instead of asking students to come up with solutions (like in any regular brainstorming session), challenge them to do the opposite.

Example: How can we increase pollution? 

By looking at things from an opposite perspective students actually enrich  the pallete of solutions…

13. Combine the arts with language

Use Storybird, comic creators, photo tools, videos in your language-related classes.

Use music as a background to enhance creativity.

Use everyday objects that might go with a story. Show them at the beginning and let kids discuss what they might be for.

Use web apps like One word http://oneword.com/.

14. Change your classroom space

How much does your classroom space invite to curiosity and creativity?…

*Angela Maiers asks that more eloquently…

If you are on this path…below I want to share some links that might help you:

http://www.mycoted.com/Category:Creativity_Techniques

http://www.pz.harvard.edu/vt/VisibleThinking_html_files/03_ThinkingRoutines/03g_CreativityRoutines.html

  1. Great discussions! Can I borrow this? And by borrow I mean blatantly rip off? I would love to see what my 4th graders think about this.From the small interactions I have had with you, I can tell you are passionate about creativity. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Definitely, Justin!Why do you think I make them public 😕 So people can use whatever they find relevant or useful!Thank you for the comment 🙂

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