School/Cohort: Australia’s Connect U
Team Name: Creativity
Team members: Mel Cashen, Jodi Woodward, Michelle Blanksby, Kynan Robinson, Kristen Swenson, Simone Hobbs, Kimberley Hall, Elyse Gill, Clare Rafferty
Problem, Issue, or Possibility: What is Creativity? What do learners need to be creative? How do you assess creativity? How do you create a creative environment?
Objectives and Assessment: Our main goal for PLPConnectU is to create an integrated (cross-curricular) unit with our topic being Creativity. Once completed, this unit plan is something that all of us should be able to implement in our classrooms, regardless of grade level.
Our group discussed the importance of looking into creativity from the teachers’ point of view – i.e. we are hoping that by inquiring into creativity with our students, we’ll be finding that not only will the PBL approach change our practice, but so will the deeper thinking about creativity. Although we aren’t creating a second unit, we are wondering: How can our teaching become more creative?
Evaluation and Results: We discussed the importance of our students having really open options for how they will share their learning, so we didn’t decide on one way, but we did decide that creating an artefact would be an important creative outlet for expression and would help students articulate what they have learned.
What kind of options might students choose? Please add your ideas to the list.
Artifacts and Documentation: Film Animation – Jodi and Mel Learning for Life Film.docx – Animation Journey Booklet, Game Creation – Kynan and Kristen, Game Creation Unit – North Fitzroy Primary School, Game Creation PBL, Students Reflections (Collated) – North Fitzroy Primary School, Game Creation PBL
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The “creation” or “artifact” can also be called a “final exhibition,” which is a culmination of the integrated learning. Taking parents through the “process” of the learning that took place before the “final exhibition” is important as well, either in a blog to parents, or when they are present to view the “final exhibition.”
Bravo for bringing back the creativity that has been lacking in the US school systems these days. Lately, it is all about testing, and there is no time for the creativity. The creativity portion IS the synthesizing of what students have learned. Students should have a well-rounded creative education.
I am a retired teacher, having taught for over 33 years in the Brookline Public School system in Massachusetts, USA. I have an unpublished book almost ready to go portraying the last year of my second grade teaching, day by day, citing pedagogy, process, student pictures, and student work. Each day describes how I integrated the curriculum areas, including technology, which I used on a daily basis, to make learning meaningful, differentiated and motivating for a diverse group of students. Every lesson has a creative component. Please let me know if I can help you in this endeavor. I have created many creative integrated social studies/literacy and global curriculum for the Town of Brookline and the City of Newton, aligning every lesson to the new Common Core Standards. I believe in your work. I would love to be part of it!