“Creativity is a great motivator because it makes people interested in what they are doing. Creativity gives hope that there can be a worthwhile idea. Creativity gives the possibility of some sort of achievement to everyone. Creativity makes life more fun and more interesting.” Edward de Bono
Recently I have been privileged to hear an amazing keynote speaker, Nirvan Mullick about adding creativity and imagination to the schools as it builds imagine, inspiration and the love of learning which then correlates to academic achievement. Mullick is the owner of the imagination foundation but more famously known for where it all started with Caine’s arcade. This is the video Nirvan created:
Below are ways to add creativity and imagination in classroom:
1. Genius Hour allows students to work on something they are passionate about.
2. Makerspaces is a community-driven workspace, where people with common interests, meet and collaborate on ‘Do it Yourself’ (DYI) projects. In schools it would be school-driven. Read more about Makerspaces from my previous blog post: Makerspace in Education. To get started with a makerspace you can use recyclables, crayons, paper, pipe cleaners. It is also great to have technology such as Little Bits, Sparkfun and MaKey MaKeys.
3. Challenges are a great way to see students add creativity. I loved the days we had challenges in my classroom such as build a boat to hold the most paper slips without sinking, the challenge you only have two pieces of paper and some masking tape. Here are some other challenges that you can add to your classroom activities to build creativity.
“In a general way, you can shake the world.” by Ghandi
A typical Makerspace is a community-driven workspace, where people with common interests, meet and collaborate on ‘Do it Yourself’ (DYI) projects. In schools it would be school-driven. (The concept reminds me a lot of what Camp Invention is all about, which is a summer camp, I used to teach) If we created a workspace that had materials such as computers, makey makeys, Raspberry Pi and other tools for a hands-on learning; I can only image the ideas students would come up with if they had this space available. Here are three reason why I think schools should have Makerspaces:
1. Authentic Learning: DIY projects are real world and authentic. In Makerspaces, students can solve real-world problems with innovative solutions. Some Makerspace innovative ideas that have been successful and you probably have heard of or even used are: Square, Makerbot and Pebble Watch.
2. 21st Century Skills: Makerspaces allow students to critically think, create, collaborate and communicate. The student’s are able to work together to learn new skills, share expertise while developing their thinking and discovering new solutions. It allows students to have choice and voice.
3. STEAM: Science, Technology, Engineering and Math = STEM. By adding in Art Design and you get STEAM. Makerspaces allow all subjects to seamless work together. Art Design is the visual standpoint and can range from the art of coding a website to the esthetic of a project.
I am helping some schools set up there Makerspace area and I am excited to see what happens ( I am sure I will blog again about this topic with the results). One middle school is even making it a ‘special/elective’ the students can sign up for. I think this is a revolutionary idea and will happen more often in schools.