Friday, October 31, 2014

Encouraging Creativity, stolen from another website

"I have stolen this content for your internet  for your digestion.  I hope you enjoy it and that you find it absorbing, interesting and  ultimately inspirational.
 I am available to run  creativity classes for individuals or groups. 
So feel free to enquire." Janet Keen, Creativity Queen.

"The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." - Albert Einstein
We do not need to teach creativity, but rather inspire its daily practice. Somewhere along the way, we simply forgot to honor this innate gift and how to access its power. Our role as educators is to encourage learning experiences that increase the ability to recognize and listen to our inner voice.
Let us begin by shifting emphasis from finding the right answer to creating school cultures that encourage risk-taking and embrace ambiguity. Psychologist Carl Rogers believed that we repress and even hide creative talent if our working environment is not psychologically safe or grounded on unconditional acceptance and empathy. Building a culture of trust is the first essential ingredient for an innovative community of thinkers to emerge. In order for innovation to breed, we need to feel safe enough to get out of our comfort zone, embrace uncertainty, take chances, and effectively collaborate with others. Together we can build ways to enhance rather than undermine creative thinking. No app, nor piece of technology, can produce this. It grows from the hearts, hands and guidance of a caring community.

The Idea Catcher

We can start by using note-taking apps to encourage observation and reflection. Have you ever noticed how ideas suddenly occur while going on a walk, taking a shower, driving or daydreaming? When our mind wanders between subconscious and conscious thought, we indirectly find ourselves working on ideas. Digital journaling can help us to tap into the flow of our internal conversations and then recognize and archive these moments. With regular practice, we begin to view the world through new eyes, and turn on the creative switch within us.

Tricking the Muse

A strategy often used to help generate ideas is brainstorming. An essential cornerstone of this technique is an understanding that creativity thrives when criticism is absent. It is essential that during brainstorming all judgment of ideas, whether negative or positive, be postponed for a later decision-making stage. We must also hold on loosely to ideas, to keep the process moving forward and be more willing to revise concepts later. Brainstorming sets us out in search of a parade of ideas while simultaneously harnessing our natural inclination to focus and identify solutions. 

Let's Get Visual

Doodling is also a powerful format for generating ideas. Again, this process needs to remain fast, fluent and flexible. The challenge here is to select a drawing app that reduces the desire to spend time creating art. The minute a thought becomes precious, the flow of ideas is repressed. The goal is to keep sketches open and unfinished, so that revision and modifications are easier to embrace later.

Paul Torrance defined creativity as "the process of sensing problems or gaps in information, forming ideas or hypotheses, testing, modifying these hypotheses and communicating the results. This process may lead to any one of many kinds of products -- verbal and nonverbal, concrete and abstract."
In order to innovate, we must have the capacity to redefine problems and frame questions. The formation of essential questions or need statements will direct and shape discovery-based learning. These questions are constantly referred back to, revised, used to establish criteria and regain focus during the decision-making process. Learning to write an inquiry question is a bit like peeling the layers of an onion; with every iteration, we get closer to the central issue.
When generating problem statements/questions, we need to adopt a flexible process that will promote the articulation of several versions. 

Be Brave

We need to demystify the creative thinking process and model how to tune into its power. Before questioning why thoughts, images, or sounds that resonate within us are important, allow time and space for unusual ideas to exist. Since the direction of this learning path can take unpredictable and seemingly random detours, it will require bravery on the part of both student and teacher. Do not be afraid to relinquish control. Use creative energy to spark the desire to learn, realize self-fulfillment, and fall in love with dreams. It will be worth it!

Enrol your child on a Janet Keen Creativity set of after school painting and mosaic classes and see his or her creativity soar using hands on techniques that are fun and lovely
Phone Janet Keen 346-3435 or email . Enrolling now for next year and school holidays 

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