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Creative Teacher

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  • TED - Technology, Entertainment, Design - Started out as a conference in 1984 and brings together a phenomenal group of original thinkers from all over the world to share new ideas, concerns, as well as innovations. Site includes many wonderful speeches by attendees. Listen to TEDTalks. Explore TED's archives. Are there presentations or speeches that moved you or gave you new perspectives?

  • There are gobs of sights that offer things of visual interest, mind benders, optical illusions, puzzles or challenges of some kind. See MindDen for optical illusions.

A caution -- When you are exploring it is wise not to have the kids around unless you are sure of the site. Some areas that have creative materials are adult oriented and have other links that may be a shocking surprise. Another Internet surprise is that a vendor who had a perfectly proper site will let the license lapse, and then a porno site will buy the URL as traffic is already established.

Webquests and activities - The Gathering


Exploring Media - Creativity is highly individualized. For instance a lot of folks think scrapbooking is a creative outlet. Others do not. Some folks like the paintings of Chagall or Kandinsky, while others prefer Renoir or Degas. The same is true for any expression of creativity. Generally creativity is subjective and a highly individual and personal experience.


Today, we can often connect to creativity through varied media. The Internet is a phenomenal source for all kinds of visual media and both audio and video clips. You could spend years just exploring YouTube. Many of the clips can also be used to teach, creatively. It is also important to remember the millions of wonderful things that are now archived online -- speeches, TV archives, historical footage, etc., and that media is part of the very powerful phantom curriculum.


Explore the followings sites and see what you can find that you think are creative and tell us why. These may be art, music, performances, people, speeches, architecture, pictures, comedy, etc (try to keep it within the bounds of good taste) -- pinpoint something that definitively speaks to you and screams "this is creativity."


Here are some places to explore and after each I offer samples of something or someone I think is creative. Find 3 sites for yourselves, or just use mine, on each of your 3 selected sites find 3-5 separate examples of things you think are highly creative. You will need to be able to download video and audio clips (Real Player; MS Media Player, or Quick Time - RP and QT are usually free downloads.)


  • Finding creative people on TED - Here is a listing of people, scientists, artists, performers, writers from everywhere. Explore the TED archives and find someone or something that speaks to you.  Example: Amy Tan on creativity

  • Media that matters - A series of short films devoted to strong views world and social issues. Make sure your volume is adjusted before you begin. Up in the right hand corner of the homepage is a pull down menu of various editions. As you scroll over each year's selections descriptions will pop up. Please note that when you bring up each film there will be a series of hot links under the play window for additional or contradictory information. Examples: World on fire - From series 5 - The power of popular music to make a point about world  poverty. Slip of the tongue - From series 6 - What can I say except ride on sister! You can purchase these to use with your classes also.

  • YouTube - You could be here for years, and more. It is also interesting to note the need for kids to comment on the offerings. Note the tone of the banter -- often missing common etiquette or good sense. Examples: Chinese Unicyclist - As an avowed genetic klutz, it should be evident why this piece appealed. Nickleback - If everyone cared - Again the power of performance and popular music to heighten awareness. OK GO - Here we go again - I love frugal invention - a great routine for little money.  


Webquest #1 - Looking at the hyperlinks below and reflecting on the sample tests that you took in class, see what you think about tests of creativity. What do you think they are actually measuring -- personality attributes, experiences growing up, problem solving abilities, risk taking, mental agility, some portion of IQ?


Find 3-5 more tests that are supposed to measure attributes of creativity and see if you agree that they might be worth using.

  • Why? why not?

  • What do they measure?

  • Are there checklists of observable traits that might serve as reasonably good indicators of creative behaviors in children?

  • What did you find?

Share these with your peers in the D2L display space.


Sample test online:

  • Creativity and Innovation - Take the test of creativity, and then do the reflective assessment and see where you fall.

  • More tests - Here are some more tests hotlinked in my site, but don't feel restricted to just use these.

Webquest #2

Here are some samples of websites linked off my creativity links page (see the link to the upper left).  Look at the sites below and answer the questions posed. Then, look at the array of sites linked off my pages as there are lots of topics and links to explore. Indeed, as the Internet is like a rabbit warren you may end up on a site I have not listed.


Find 4 more sites or connected information pages or articles that speak to you, or that offer you useful or helpful information in understanding creativity or creative people, or that help you devise classroom activities or create learning environments that nurture creativity.  Place these in the section marked Webquest #2 in D2L for your peer to explore. Make sure to offer an annotation as to why you chose this website and how you are going to use this information.

  • Quizballs - Can any of these be adapted to the classroom? If so how?

  • 4H Building Partnerships - Can you think of ways to use these ideas in your community?

  • 6 Myths of Creativity - Looking at the list of myths, are there some that you believed before you read this material?

  • BellaOnline - Looking at this site, are there ideas that draw you in or that you think can use in your classes? 


Projects - Conceptualizing your project:


If you don't have a definitive idea as to what you want to do for your personal project, then you may wish to use some of the following ideas and then a bit of brainstorming or personalized brainstorming to narrow the focus.


If you are stuck, then try asking yourself these questions.

  • Is there something that you used to enjoy doing and you have lost track of it? Might you want to rekindle this talent or interest?

  • Is there something that you started but never finished?

  • Is there a craft you always wanted to learn?

  • Is there a talent that you have that you always wanted to explore or develop more?

  • Is there an area that you want to know more about how it is done, techniques, tricks, honing skills -- writing fiction, poetry, painting or drawing, throwing pottery, making trash art, being a make-up artist, a weaver, a carpenter, a sculptor, a juggler, a clown.

As you progress through your project, remember to post what is happening on the website. Upload pictures if you like, but make sure you keep peers appraised of how it is going to include your triumphs and frustrations. 


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copyright Leslie Owen Wilson, 2007