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Creativity, community and ICT
Creativity, community and ICT

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6 One hundred possibilities

The more teachers are convinced that intellectual and expressive activities have both multiplying and unifying possibilities, the more creativity favours friendly exchanges with imagination and fantasy.

Creativity requires that the school of knowing finds connections with the school of expressing, opening the doors to the hundred languages of children.

(Loris Malaguzzi, 1990)

In each of the learning communities described in the case studies, there is the expectation that teachers and their students share the same goals and purposes. But also, that individuals are experts in different things – and speak from different experiences, and therefore they take a variety of roles in the classroom community.

Creativity is also an aspect of knowledge that is valued – and it is itself the subject of learning.

Students in each of these communities value collaboration and joint knowledge-building. The social nature of learning is explicit.

Here is how I would summarise the key elements of these inspiring classroom communities:

  • Goals
    • strong sense of purpose and ultimate goals;

    • fully engaged in, passionate about, their ‘subject’;

    • a desire to do new things;

    • ambitious and risk taking.

  • Activities (commonly ascribed to ‘creative’ individuals) include:
    • initiating projects;

    • considering a range of ideas before settling on one solution;

    • problem solving; formulating new ideas, hypothesising;

    • using technologies as integral to work, to make thinking explicit or in order to create new products.

  • Products (commonly ascribed to ‘creative’ individuals):
    • high quality;

    • explicit about values;

    • innovative;

    • unique.

Margaret Bowden (1999) says that there are two key dimensions to creativity: the historical and the personal. In this unit I have argued for the importance of a third – the social.

As educators, we need to pay attention to this social dimension of creativity if our young people are to have access to ‘one hundred languages, one hundred hands, one hundred thoughts, one hundred ways of thinking.’ One hundred possibilities.

You can plan a school-based training session on ICT and creativity by looking at Activity 5.

Activity 5

Share the ideas from the case studies for which you were responsible. Decide together which you think might be of most interest to your colleagues. Plan a school-based training session on ICT and creativity for your colleagues (you might wish to use some of the activities from this unit with them).

Include in this session:

  • the opportunity for everyone to explore views of creativity – as well as time for colleagues to explore its meaning for themselves;

  • a discussion on how creativity might be fostered more strongly in your school community using ICT.