In practice, a culture of innovation depends on cultivating three processes, each of which is related to the others.
-The first is imagination: the ability to bring to mind events and ideas that are not present to our senses.
-The second is creativity: the process of having original ideas that have value.
-The third is innovation: the process of putting original ideas into practice.
There is a difference between teaching through creativity and teaching for creativity. Good teachers know that their role is to engage and inspire their students. This is a creative process in itself. [...] Too many teachers are hired for knowledge of their discipline rather than their interest in students. Good teaching requires personal knowledge as well as the ability to engage others. Teaching for creativity is about facilitating other people's creative work. [...] Teaching for creativity involves asking open-ended questions where there may be multiple solutions; working in groups on collaborative projects, using imagination to explore possibilities; making connections between different ways of seeing; and explore the ambiguities and tensions that may lie between them.
Everyday, the students have a "Warm-up Question" as type of bell work. The warm-up question is typically an open ended question which can be answered in multiple ways but is still somehow thematically connected to the week's unit. Examples of the warm-up questions can be found here: http://humanbiomrt.weebly.com/curriculum.html
Working in groups on collaborative projects:
We just spent a week working on two collaborative group projects: Body in a Box and Nervous System Posters
Using imagination to explore possibilities:
The students created free-standing structures out of pasta and marshmallows to see how much weight they could hold up: http://humanbiomrt.weebly.com/home/activity-engineering-anatomy-tower-of-pasta
Making connections between different ways of seeing and explore the ambiguities and tensions that may lie beneath them:
At the end of the Neurobiology of the Addiction Unit, we conducted a Socratic Seminar which had the students generate their own open-ended questions and facilitate a student-led discussion about them. Many of the questions and commentary explored the gray area social and psychological side of addiction which also incorporated what the students learned regarding the neurobiology of addiction: http://humanbiomrt.weebly.com/home/socratic-seminar-addiction
At the end of this book, I know I can teach creatively and for creativity. I wholeheartedly agree with most of the ideas presented by Robinson, and I believe that this book is essential reading for anyone involved in education. While some parts of his book are bit esoteric and academic, especially the middle, the author needed to present his case about the value of creativity and how it works at on systemic level. This is not a superficial book with simple suggestions because the challenges it outlines are huge in scope and complicated in function.
Robinson, K. (2011). Out of our minds: Learning to be creative. Oxford: Capstone.