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?
- 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…
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.
Some answers here…
3. Ask KIDS about their own creative process
They share what inspires them…and that can enable others to use the same sources of inspiration.
*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!
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).
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: