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Creativity and Imagination in Education

Assignment 2
by

emily walton

on 9 May 2010

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Transcript of Creativity and Imagination in Education

Creativity and Imagination In Education What is Creativity and Imagination in Education? How do we assess creativity and imagination in classrooms? A definition of assessment in creativity and imagination in education: Creativity is not easily assessed as it is not something that can be given a specific grade for as most creativity comes down to personal opinion. The only way that we can fairly and accurately assess creativity and imagination in schools is through effort and evidence throughout different processes. However there are key assessment principles that are included in Australia’s national curriculum. These principles can also relate to measuring creativity and imagination within a student:
1.The child is at the heart of assessment
2. Assessment needs to provide a view of the whole child
3. Assessment is integral to teaching and learning
4. Assessment includes reliable judgements about how children are performing related, where appropriate, to national standards.
(Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority. 2010)

Definition of Creativity and imagination in education: To write a specific definition for creativity and imagination can be somewhat difficult as creativity and imagination can be seen as relative and contextual. There are many different views on what creativity and imagination is especially in reguards to its place in Education. According to John Cleese, (2009) he states that our creative ideas are ‘unconscious ideas’ and we can’t pinpoint where they come from. He is also saying that creativity is found in everyone and it is not as if just one day our creativity emerges, we have always had it. However Ken Robinson (2006) has a more simpler definition of creativity: “Creativity are original ideas that have value.” This is also stating that we all have the ability to have creative thoughts and we can use these thoughts in things such as artwork. As a teacher, how can we evaluate creativity and imagination in our classroom? As a teacher, are you creative? What do you think your creative skills are? What was the last activity where you incoporated creativity and imagination? How do you look for signs and evidence of creativity in your classroom? Do you think you could be more creative in your classroom? If yes, how so? These are questions that could be placed in a questionnaire or used as a proforma to evaluate the creativity of a teacher's personal creativeness and also the use of creativity and imagination in their classroom. What is your favourite acitivity where you like to include creativity and imagination? Have you used this in your classroom? Activity 1 I think a good way of showing creativity and imagination is through the use of creative writing. By allowing students to brainstorm their ideas then put them into practice is a great way of seeing their creative thought processes. "If all the world were..." The first activity is called 'If all the world were.."

This activity would be designed for VELS level 3 for students in grade 3 & 4. (VELS website 2010) It would be under the domain of English and the standard of writing. This activity could also be adapted for students in older grades by making it more difficult however I think this activity would be too difficult for the younger grades.

To start off this activity the teacher would lead a brainstorm activity. The discussion for the brainstorm would be: "What would happen if all the world were..." So the teacher could start off by the brainstorm discussion on the board by writing "If all the world were happy." Then the teacher would start to ask each student what suggestion they could think of for what the world were be. This would create a brainstorm with lots of suggestions. Then the teacher would then group the ideas into sections for example colours, or foods, or shapes- depending on what the students came up with.

Then the teacher would write up an example of the worksheet starting with "if..." The idea behind this worksheet is for the students to write a creative story about what the world would be if it was completely different.

The teacher could go back and use their example of happy. For example: if... all the world were happy, there would be no sad people. Everyone would walk along the streets singing happy songs and smiling. No-one would be sick so there would be no hospitals but lots of parks for everyone to play in.
Then the students would be sent back to their tables with their worksheet title 'if..' and would start to write their own creative stories of the world.

To extend this activity the students could also draw a picture of the world that they have created in the story on another piece of paper.

Acitivity and worksheet adapted by Mellick and Catterall (1981)
This is an example of a brainstorm of concept map that a class would make. If all the world were... pink happy sad invisible colourful monsters crazy spotty sheep ants silly tiny Here is an example of the simple worksheet that the students would be given to write their creative story. Activity 2 Observation Proforma These are some questions that the teacher would ask themselves during these activities
and also once the students had completed the activities. These are also
key things that the teacher would look for in each individual student
in regards to their creative progress and their thought processes used during
this task. Have all the students contributed to the brainstorm
discussion and included their ideas? Are students following through with their idea that was placed on
the board and are now writing a creative story? Are the children suceeding in writing a creative story using creative and describing language? Has the task been understood and students are all writing individual and orginal
pieces of work? As a teacher, can I see evidence of
creativity and imagination used in this task? And are students really using their imaginations in creating a new and crazy world? (Used specifically in task 1) Student Evaluation This student evaluation would be aimed at grade 3 students as this is the level that I based my activities on. However this
evaluation could easily be adapted to younger or older levels.
For younger levels I would only use smiley faces and the students would just have to circle which one they felt related to them. And for older year levels I would get them to write full sentences or even a paragraph in answer to these questions. All these questions would be answered in a way of the students having to circle either a yes, no or maybe as to whether these questions apply to them being a creative student or not.
Do you think you are a creative person?
Do you think that you used your own ideas in these activities?
Do you enjoy coming up with your own ideas when writing stories or drawing pictures?
Did you find these 2 tasks enjoyable?
Would you like to do more activities like these at school?
Do you find acitivities like these fun and interesting? "Create a machine to make your life easier" This activity would be designed for either VELS levels 3 or 4. I think both levels would be able to complete this activity however you may get a more detailed and possibly even more creative response from grade 5 & 6 students. This activity is also in the VELS domain of English and the standard of writing. (VELS website 2010.)

This activity has a similar structure to the previous activity but the outcome at the end is different.

The teacher will start of this lesson with a brainstorm discussion on the board. The teacher will start off talking about machines that we already know exist to do things in our daily lives. Then the teacher will start off with an example like: "Imagine if there was a machine that could bring in all the washing from the washing line." Then that will start a class discussion of what machines we can think of to do the most weirdest and wonderful things for us in our lives. Then the teacher will talk about going in depth in describing our new machine. Then the teacher will draw an example of a machine on the board.

Then the students will be asked to go back to their tables and complete the worksheet. In the imagination bubble they will draw their picture and on the back or on lined paper they will write a discription of their machine and they will also give their new machine a name!

This activity and worksheet was adapted from Grossbard (1983)
Here is an example of the worksheet which the students
will draw a picture of their new machine. Are the students being original in their ideas when drawing a picture
of their newly invented machine. (task 2) Analysis of Data The data collected from the observation proforma will be
analysed in the way of, are the majority of answers yes to these questions? If they are yes, it means that as the teacher they have succeeded in successfully teaching a creative task and also have the students succeeded in adapting creative skills and using them in these tasks?

The teacher in charge will collect the data by surveying the class as a whole to see if their class as a whole are answering 'yes' to these questions. I think it would be too difficult for a teacher to observe every student whilst the task was being undertaken. But the teacher will get a feel of the general vibe and whether students are using their imaginations and succeeding in these tasks. However a more formal assessment process will also take place where the teacher will fill out an assessment rubric for each student that will incoporate their thought processes whilst completing the activity as well as assessing the final product. I think that this is important as creativity and imagination is not something that should be assessed solely on the final product as lots of other processes come before the final product. These processes include brainstorming of ideas and thought processes.
This will inform curriculum developers as to whether there are enough creative and imagination acitivities in the curriculum. Curriculum developers will find this out through analysing the data as to whether the students are successful with these activities or not. Recommendations could be developed through the planning of the curriculum as to whether either more or less activities like these should be incporated into the curriculum. Assessment Process Assessment Framework These are some questions or guidelines that teachers can refer to when assessing their students on activities specifically relating to creativity and imagination. If these activities were to be formally assessed to add to their end of semester report, you could turn these questions into an assessment rubric or set of guidelines as dot points. Or if the assessment was less formal these are guidelines that the teacher could observe the class on as a whole. Have the students understood the task and are incorporating elements of imagination?
Was the aim of the activities achieved?
As a teacher, was my teaching ability effective?
Did students have the opportunity to ask questions? Or was the teaching componenent successful that nothing went unanswered.
What were aspects of the activity that could be improved? (If any)
Specific assessment requirements:
Did students follow the writing structure when writing their creative story (Task 1)
Did the students follow the writing structure of a descriptive piece when writing about their new machine? Also did they draw a creative picture incoporating their original ideas? (Task 2) Is it evident that any students have not understood the task? This would be an assessment process for general tasks involving creativity and imagination. This process could be used by teachers for any task that the aim of it is to involve creativity and imagination.

Creativity and imagination would be assessed over a period of time involving more than one activity so the teacher would be able to gain an overall perspective of the students skills and abilities in different types of activities.

Generally what will be assessed is:
Students ability to follow set tasks
Students ability to incoporate their own creativity and imagination into the set tasks
To follow instructions in order to enhance students skills
Evidence of progress from first teaching lesson to last teaching lesson for specific lessons incorporating creativity and imagination

Data will be collected in different ways. One way will be a general overall assessment of the class' ability through the first lesson. Then after that being assessed the teacher will re-establish what needs to be taught next and whether anything needs to be repeated.
The second way that data will be collected is in a more formal process where the teacher will fill out a rubric for each student which incoporates their thought process and how they went by the activity rather than just assessing them on the final product.

Developments will be determined through a wide range of processes. These include initial observations by the teacher during the lesson, students evaulations, the assessment framework and the observation proforma.

Feedback will be given in different ways. These include feedback being discussed by other teachers who may also be completing these activities or pre-service teachers on teaching rounds. Or even fellow peers. On a more formal basis the findings of these tasks could be discussed at a school staff meeting or a curriculum planning meeting if severe changes need to be made reguarding incorporating creativity and imagination into the curriculum. Feedback could also be given to students reguarding their success at these activities, or whether they may need a little extra attention if required. Do you think that it is important to incorporate creativity and imagination in the curriculum. Why/why not? References Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority. (2010) Retrieved from http://www.acara.edu.au

Catterall B., and Mellick, L. J. (1981) It’s a Crazy Mixed up World- Creative Writing for Primary Classes. Brisbane: William Books Publications

Cleese, J. (2009). The Source of Creativity. Retrieved from http://www.freshcreation.com/entry/john_cleese_the_source_of_creativity/

Grossbard, A., and Grossbard, J. (1983) Not Your Usual Colouring Book. Australia: Reflective Nominees Pty. Ltd.

Robinson, K. (2006). Do schools kill creativity? Retrieved from http://www.freshcreation.com/entry/sir_ken_robinson_about_creativity

VELS website. (Victorian Essential Learning Standards) Retrieved May 7 2010 from: http://vels.vcaa.vic.edu.au/vels/level3.html
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