Monday, March 25, 2013

Modeling Creativity: A Battle Cry

Here's a thought:
When teachers teach writing, they write too. They model the thinking and strategies they know good writers use.
When teachers want kids to silent read, they do too. They model what it means to be a joyful reader, falling into the "zone" with a good book.
When something's worth doing, we model the behaviour so our kids can see that it's important.

So why don't we show students what it means to be creative? Why do we assume students know what effective brainstorming looks like? Why don't we show students what it means to not close early and to keep ideating even if you've had a pretty good idea already? Why don't we put ourselves out there and take risks in front of students? We need to.

We need to keep ongoing lists of great ideas, as we ask our students to. And you know what? Our lists should include things we want to do outside of school, too. We need to keep an inventory of tools in our toolboxes - strategies and techniques we can use when asked to complete a task - as we ask our students to. We need to work through problems that we don't know the answers to, in front of our students.

When we do this, we will not only know what we are asking our students to do, but we further our own creative development too. And how could that be a bad thing?

So Take up your arms, teachers, and create!

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