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Education Specialist

"Plenty of kids like the easy

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"Plenty of kids like the easy way out, want to be told what to memorize to get a grade." Isn't this a symptom of any system that continues judging kids as symbolized by a grade? Our children are trained to do what's necessary to be given the ultimate carrot, a grade; do you every see children on their own in a field or playing in the streets who take the easy way out?

Well, this is a great concept

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Well, this is a great concept and one that deserves it's proper recognition. "Failure" shouldn't be an option. To be honest, failure really isn't an option and after 10 years of actual teaching I have seen that "failure" in it's traditional sense doesn't really exist in many schools. And that's a good thing. But it still is important to both coach students to bring out their creativity and also to let them know how they could improve. It's worth understanding that not all children care to delve into their expression of self. There's a difference between providing feedback that tells a child that they failed to be creative and telling them they are not able to be creative. Plenty of kids like the easy way out, want to be told what to memorize to get a grade, and just re-do what has already been done. That's reality. That's often easier. So, we have to guide them to better understand how to be creative, provide opportunities for authentic creativity through problem-based scenarios, and give specific/targeted feedback.

Did the child show any growth as measured by your indicators? Give them the feedback that informs them of what they demonstrated. If they showed growth, good. Let them know what you observed. Did they demonstrate little growth? Well, they need to know that too. And it's the same with creativity of any other critical skill as it is for the various content areas.

Create a rubric that provides feedback on key attributes of creativity (from the Critical Skills Program)
-recognizing conformist, conventional, in-the-box thinking and seeking alternatives
-expanding existing ideas
-synthesizing old ideas into unique or fresh ideas
-taking risks

There are plenty of questions you can ask as a coach that can encourage creative thinking. Provide feedback. It's true that it is great for a kid to be free to create and think independently. But we still need to be prepared to guide them, provide ideas to extend their thinking, and challenge themselves to push themselves further. On top of all of this, you're always going to be expected to report out progress and somehow "quantify" the learning. This is a step in the direction of doing all of those things.

Social media for e-learning & technology

Thanks Andrew for sharing

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Thanks Andrew for sharing your ideas with us. It'd be great if more educators could share their experience about how they implement and assess creativity.

I've just posted this question on Quib.ly (I often use it as I can fallow many conversations there between educators and parents) in hope that I can gather more information, more experiences and ideas around this topic http://quib.ly/qu/how-do-you-teach-and-assess-creativity-in-your-classro...

Parent of three lower school boys in Denver and author of a parenting blog

A rubric is a good way to

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A rubric is a good way to think about what you are doing in the classroom. That should be combined with purposefully watching teachers who excel at getting the most out of their kids and encourage them to get even more creative in their thinking. The two together are a great way to grow as a teacher. Here is a link to an article about a second grade teacher in Denver who won an Ignite Innovation Award here. http://voices.yahoo.com/the-pioneer-spirit-thrives-colorado-classrooms-1...

It's all about feedback

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The value in assessing creativity lies in the feedback you give. It's not about a grade, it's about growth and being willing to take risks in your thinking.

7th and 8th Grade Art teacher from Reeds Spring, Missouri

speaking of Big Al... an

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speaking of Big Al... an interesting take on the subject scooped by Beth Dichter and blogged upon by Greg at Digital Tonto. insightful and provocative
.http://www.digitaltonto.com/2011/how-to-unlock-creativity/

Creativity is knowing how to hide your sources - Albert Einstein

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You can't really go wrong with the following reads:

The Element: How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything - Ken Robinson and Lou Aronica

Out of Our Minds: Learning to be Creative - Ken Robinson

There are also a great many TED talks from Ken Robinson. I had the pleasure of being part of a seminar and it was truly inspirational.

Creating Innovators- Tony Wagner

A great book with some creative links to video content at its heart.

Educating for Creativity: A

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Educating for Creativity: A Global Conversation is a book by Dr. Robert Kelly that I would highly recommend for those interested in incorporating creativity in their teaching. His research identifies seven strands of creative development (easier to create criteria for assessment) and his book explains the concept of creativity and how it can be applied into educational practice.

Education Specialist

creativity

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Spot on "Future"! The notion of assessing creativity is antithetical; take an interest in the kids' creations and support them!

research on formative assessment

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Creativity is complicated to assess, and complicated to improve. What we need is data-driven research on what works and what doesn't. See our upcoming academic workshop on improving formative assessment using data: http://sites.google.com/site/ffileworkshop/

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