Creativity is a concept that is generating so much buzz in the educational sphere. School authorities, policy makers, and curriculum designers all agree upon the necessity of turning classrooms into creativity-friendly environments where students can nourish and grow their creative skills, but no one has a certain formula on how can this happen.
The nature of creativity ,which can be elusive if not well defined . has made it hard for educators to fully grasp its underpinnings because boundaries between what is creative thinking, critical thinking, intelligence are blurred. Even much bewildering is the fact of divergent body of researches on this topic, some thinkers argue that creativity is a form of intelligence ( or as one of them said " creativity is intelligence having fun ), others think it has nothing to do with intelligence but rather a way of thinking. Some think creativity is a skill that can be learned just like other skills and others think it is rather a mindset and a mental inclination.
Given the ambiguity surrounding the concept of creativity, educators are left to their own common sense and ' logico-deductive knowledge' to fully understand and apply what they think creativity is in their classrooms. But , on the other hand, no matter how divergent and elusive the definitions of creativity are, no two wise persons would ever argue over its importance in students education, it is even among the ultimate goals of the overall learning : creating creative minds. In this regard and as a teacher I would highly recommend my fellow teachers to give it some time and read some great articles about creativity mentioned below. They can definitely help in clearing out the cloud a bit and probably enable you to forge your own conception of how to teach creativity in the best way possible.
Leading in Context ( a great website ) has recently published an awesome article about creativity where they provided a table with detailed information about what creativity is which I am including below. They also provided some interesting definitions and quotes such as :
1- " According to John Maxwell in his book Thinking for a Change , creativity is not a skill or attribute, but a mindset that embraces a broad array of different things including ambiguity, learning, possibility, connecting, ideas, options, exploring gaps and inconsistencies, the offbeat, and failure. "
2- " The university of Michigan ' Critical and Creative Thinking Page at umich.edu sees critical thinking as " the process we use to reflect on, assess and judge the assumption underlying our own and others ideas and efforts : and creative thinking as " the process we use to develop ideas that are unique, useful and worthy of further elaboration".
3- here are two awesome definitions of creativity :
' Creativity is the joy of not knowing it all " Ernie Zelinski, Creativity expert.
' Creativity is intelligence having fun " John Maxwell, Leadership Author
Here are some more interesting articles to read about creativity from :
1- What is Creativity Anyway
This is a great post written by Jan Philips in Huffington Post
2- Why are Creative Leaders So Rare ?
This is an article written by Navi Rajou on HBR Blog Network.
3- Weird Rules of Creativity: Think You Can Manage Creativity ? Here is Why You are Wrong.
Artilce written by Robert Sutton from Harvard Business School
4- Critical Thinking and Creativity: An Overview and Comparison of The Theories
This is a paper written by Jean Marrapodi for Apple Star
5- Top Free 9 Tools to Develop Students Creativity
Explore some web tools to use with your students in the classroom to develop their creativity.
6- Teachers's Guide to Creativity
All that teachers need to know to teach creativity in their classrooms.
7- Do Schools Kill Students Creativity
Find out if the educational system at schools kill students creative powers
8- Four Great Videos about Creativity
Check out these awesome TED videos about creativity
9- Five Factors to Be Creative
Find out about the five factors to be creative as explained by John Cheese in these videos.
Check this table from Leading in Context to learn more about creativity