Sunday, October 4, 2015

So What Is Creativity?

I am still pushing my thinking forward when students are in the role of designers. As educators we read a lot, we connect online and face to face. I need to learn and move forward with my students' thinking and their ability to decipher the process through them than just through what I know. I needed to question more and listen more as well as reflect with them. My students are my partners in moving my learning forward!

As we continue to unpack the process of the skills through daily applications of learning tasks, We consolidate and reflect for determining next steps about what is making through: coding, 3D printing, robotics, designing, of course including concepts from science, the arts and math when designing. This blog will reflect on our present learning process.

As I embark on this journey with my former students.  This is important, when we are unpacking strategies we are not only referring to the present, we are also reflecting on last year's experiences. We are connecting what we are already know and unpacking the thinking.

The students already highlighted that creativity:

  • Is designing with tools like craft materials and tech tools
  • It takes perseverance and growth mindset (Grit)
  • Imagination
  • Suggestions
  • Causes
  • Brainstorming and using strategies with colleagues for unpacking ideas
  • It is critical thinking as problem solving
  • Ideas
  • Collaboration
  • Communication
  • Repeat, improve and retry
The students are excited about printing objects with the 3D printer this year. We are beginning to reflect on the causes and passion projects for the use of the printer and how can we be empathetic with the tools and make a change to someone else not just for ourselves?

All Grade 6 students will participate with the cardboard challenge and will apply the concept of circuits to their games and coding, also fundraising for Play For Change for Free The children.

I have shared with the students the following image to reflect about the process and the journey of the process. 

We reviewed some examples from last year about empathy and creativity as well as some new ones:

Ipad Keyguard shared by Nancy Khalil

This is our second week at unpacking the process of creativity with empathy. We are starting our passion project with our school community. From our resource teachers for our special needs students, one class is designing sequenced puzzle pieces that could be reused and the other class is designing sequenced numbers grooved puzzles. Of course the students began with their own visual and continue to apply communication skills, solving problem strategies including mathematics with the prototype and designing on Tinkercad for 3D printing. 

The key to guiding our learning is our daily consolidations of unpacking the thinking process, reflecting on misconceptions, new learning and determining our next steps. 

New learning guiding questions: : 
  • Am I capable of finding or suggesting a solution? This was a huge learning with opposing ideas and finding a solution
  • How am I building on to existing solution?
  • How am I  applying creative thinking strategies?
  • How am I taking the responsibility or my part of the project?
  • How am I dealing with opposing views?
  • How might I ...?
  • Am I applying open ended conversation in order to  understand my colleague's suggestion? 
  • How are we gathering our ideas?

These are the reflective questions that we are presently focusing on to be explicit with our thinking towards our creative thinking process and building experiences for our learning.  

As we continue to explore and reflect many circumstances are occurring throughout our process. This is a critical shift in educators' learning in combining projects with skills, concrete procedural knowledge and having students to think for themselves. 

This is not a tidy process or a lesson plan, it is a transformation of learning and understanding. How are we giving the opportunity for our students to be creative problem solvers? How are we encouraging students to think critically about ideas and situations?

The following example of designing with a purpose for Kindergarten students to record themselves without having to touch the laptop. 

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