5 Ways to Bring More Creativity Into the Classroom

creativity

Reposted from Edudemic:

Learning a specific skill set doesn’t have the value in today’s world that it once did. Learning how to be more creative (and thus adaptable) – now that’s what prepares students for life beyond the classroom. Schools and businesses throughout the world are latching onto this idea. Academia has started to embrace providing courses in creativity. Many of the biggest and most successful businesses in the world now practice the 20% rule – the commitment to allowing employees to devote 20% of their work time to thinking creatively and exploring new ideas.

But this trend toward valuing creativity goes beyond the big tech companies that have long treated “innovation” as a buzzword. A 2010 survey of over 1,500 executives found that creativity is valued as the most important business skill in the modern world. “Creative” is one of the most commonly used terms on LinkedIn year after year. Creativity is no longer seen as just being for artists and musicians (not that that view was ever accurate). It’s a crucial skill for everybody to master.

Introducing more creativity into your classroom and assignments doesn’t have to make your job harder. It can actually make it a lot more interesting. Having to go home to a stack of dull papers to grade was never anyone’s favorite part of teaching. Giving assignments that require more creativity will likely result in more engaging work for your students, and a more entertaining grading process for you. Here are five ways to bring more creativity into your classroom…

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Rigor: What it Is, and What it Isn’t [TABLE]

rigorTo help educators work together to have some focused conversations about what rigor must mean, John Wink whipped up this table comparing what it is and what it isn’t.  His hope is that all educators within an organization will have meaningful discussions about rigor and create a common understanding, so that together they could make a rigorous school instead of rigorous classrooms.

View original post here.

Creativity Joins Fragments of Knowledge into a New Unity of Understanding

memory

Reposted from Brain Pickings:

While Vera John-Steiner expanded on seminal work like Harvard psychologist Jerome Bruner’s model of creativity and Howard Gardner’s influential theory of multiple intelligences, she pioneered a new framework for understanding creativity based on qualitative research and interdisciplinary perspective. An early champion of an idea now ubiquitous in today’s ever-growing catalog of books on creativity, John-Steiner approached her research with visionary clarity of conviction: “That ‘creativity’ is beyond analysis is a romantic illusion we must now outgrow.”

One of the most important and enduring of John-Steiner’s insights on the “invisible tools” that propel a life of creative work and set artists apart from the rest is the concept of memory and how it empowers us to connect seemingly unrelated ideas — one of the defining characteristics of the creative mind and the basis of combinatorial creativity. She writes, “Among the invisible tools of creative individuals is their ability to hold on to the specific texture of their past. Their skill is akin to that of a rural family who lives through the winter on food stored in their root cellar… The creative use of one’s past, however, requires a memory that is both powerful and selective.”

This highly selective nature of creative memory is a supreme testament to the fact that memory is not a recording device and that, as legendary neurologist Oliver Sacks would put it decades later, “memories are not fixed or frozen, like Proust’s jars of preserves in a larder, but are transformed, disassembled, reassembled, and recategorized with every act of recollection.”

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31 Ways to Be Creative [INFOGRAPHIC]

31ways

You could do anything except for doing absolutely nothing. What you do does not matter so much. But some ways of how to be creative are proven to turn on your genius even when you are deep in the gutter of self-doubt. This infographic from Funders and Founders identifies thirty-one different ways to tap into your creativity. An explanation of each way is provided on the original post.

View the original post here.

 

Your Innovation Investment

innovation key

Innovation is generative. It finds solutions where there are no conditions or preconceptions. It is selfless, often born from collaboration and cooperative effort. It is creative, seeking new ways to solve existing problems.

So when businesses start up based on an innovative idea, solution or product, it’s fresh, new and exciting. People have found their way “outside the box” to new ways of thinking and looking at the world.

But when businesses launch fueled by innovation, they eventually feel the forces of the marketplace pushing them to shift, to sustaining and maintaining business interests. This is a problem. Business self-interest undermines continued innovation.

We have seen this over time, again and again. Businesses founded around thinking differently eventually become part of the corporate landscape. The same people who were once shaking things up with new thinking are now towing the company line. Business culture is “the box.”

As consumers, we contribute to this phenomenon. Brand loyalty becomes an inhibitor of innovation. Not for the companies in question, but for us, as players in the marketplace. When our brand loyalty feeds the status quo, we’re part of the problem. How many companies to which we are loyal have the same kind of corporate bottom line as their competitors? And why would you want to support that company exclusively, when their priorities are no longer the ideals that founded their existence?

Don’t get me wrong. There’s a place for corporate leaders in the free marketplaces of ideas and commerce. They create stability. They set standards for product excellence. They finance numerous philanthropic initiatives. But they also create inertia. They resist change and they protect their self-interest. In short, they unintentionally but necessarily grow to join the establishment culture.

My point is this. If you are truly a human potential professional, dedicated to learning, critical thinking, creativity and innovation, be aware that the choices you make spending dollars should be consistent with your calling. Blind brand loyalty goes against everything we are about as educators, by definition. And the more of us who betray that calling in the marketplace, the more we thwart innovation.

It doesn’t take some cynical, deliberate plot. Blind brand loyalty is as easy as lazy thinking and old habits. On the other hand, walking the walk takes effort and a mindful self-awareness. Am I supporting innovation in deciding from whom I choose to buy? Am I conscious about how my economic choices either enhance or undermine my educator creed?

Each of us…enough of us…choosing not to just follow blind brand loyalty, create ripples, waves and currents that influence corporate giants and how they operate in the marketplace. Sending the clear message that we support innovation…that we are constantly reassessing where we invest our time, energy and money…that we don’t buy into yesterday’s ad campaign slogans…that we won’t mindessly line their pockets with our money…that we make deliberate choices to invest in the future.

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Life is Your Talents Discovered [VIDEO 10:58]

Perfect to kick off your new year, Sir Ken Robinson’s talk on finding your talent from a TEDx event in Liverpool England. Here he makes the point, “being born at all is a miracle, so what are you going to do with your life?”Robinson says, “It amazes me how much people settle for. People who create very different sorts of lives that affect people very differently. It’s the difference between human beings and the rest of life on earth: creativity. Nothing is so influential as a life well-lived!”

Seven Strategies for Changing the World

changetheworld

Reposted from Psychology Today:

Bob and Michele Root-Bernstein were recently honored by the Korean government with an invitation to provide the keynote address at the 2014 TECH+ conference, TECH+  standing for Technology, Economy, Culture and Humanity.  The goal of the conference was to highlight how these four fields can be integrated to foster open innovation, design, green growth, and the arts through innovation and entrepreneurial business practices.  Organized like a series of TED talks on steroids, the forum was hosted by the Ministry of Knowledge Economy (MKE), the Korea Institute for Advancement of Technology (KIAT), and the JoongAng Ilbo (part of JoongAng Media Network, a leading media group in Korea).

Bob provided a summary of many of their fundamental ideas about creativity in a talk entitled “Seven Strategies for Changing the World”. These strategies have been culled from Bob’s thirty years of personal experience as a management consultant for major biotech, pharmaceutical, and chemical companies as well as their ongoing study of successful innovators from every imaginable discipline.

Each strategy can be summarized with a single verb: 1) Imagine; 2) Question; 3) Doubt; 4) Constrain; 5) Train; 6) Match; 7) Act. And each strategy Bob presented can be learned and practiced separately, with benefits for everyday problem solving, so they are well worth keeping in mind whenever you undertake any new project. Together, they are far more powerful, representing a roadmap for transformational change. Here are more details on each strategy…

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