Throughout the years, education systems have been the backbone for developing critical thinking abilities in learners and producing world changers. When you delve deeper into the abilities and skills that learners acquire or must obtain from schooling, you will discover the remarkable skill known as “creativity”. Apart from social skills, digital literacy, and problem-solving abilities, creativity is another vital skill that can set any student apart.
What is Creativity & Why Does It Matter?
Creativity can be defined in so many ways but a simple explanation would be the ability to formulate new ideas or bring up something new that has never existed before. Generally, the ability to generate new insightful opinions or bring about breakthroughs is called creativity. Creativity, just like a growth mindset is very essential in life as it helps learners or individuals see the world differently.
People who are creative see something unique or great in everything that may be deemed a waste. Creative people also see challenges as opportunities and work to come up with something better or create something new out of nothing. As a parent or a teacher, you may be concerned about how you can cultivate the skill of creativity in your kid or learners! Surprisingly, a study conducted by NASA found that children are born geniuses, but this trait diminishes or fades away as one grows. The study revealed that 95% of kids aged 5 years were geniuses but unfortunately, the number dropped as the children got older.
Why the drop and why can’t children remain creative? Creativity is a skill that requires nurturing, especially during a tender age. Many psychologists deem creativity a skill that never comes by accident. Certain teaching or learning methods can help learners acquire the ability of divergent thinking, which helps them think creatively. Apart from homes, a classroom is a perfect place to start nurturing creativity in children or learners. If you’re a teacher or an educator, here are some of the best approaches to fostering creativity among students.
5 Incredible Ways Teachers Can Rely On to Foster Creativity Among Learners
- Leverage STEM Activities
Although they are highly attributed to science subjects, introducing STEM activities to students regardless of their field of study can help them develop the skill of creative thinking. Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM activities) have proven to be effective in helping learners think divergently.
These hands-on activities allow students to explore different possibilities to solve problems and find answers to doubts and questions. Unlike convergent thinking which focuses on helping students to retain facts, leveraging STEM activities does not only allow students to retain facts but helps them think outside the box. By thinking outside the box, students can come up with innovative ideas and SMART Goals that can lead to groundbreaking innovations.
- Introduce Group projects
Group projects are the finest approach to developing and weighing creativity abilities in students. Generally, they allow collaboration, cooperation, and communication centered around planning and division of tasks. It should be noted that there is a difference between creativity and innovation.
Creativity alone involves generating new ideas and approaches whereas innovation combines both the generation of new ideas and their application. Group projects are known to sharpen learners’ brains to think better and competitively as a way of producing something new or ideas that make living better or solves common problems.
Today, there is a range of technological innovations that are perfect examples of creativity and collaboration. These include brain mapping, drones, and neuromorphic chips among others
- Try out Gamification & Digital Tools
Gamification is one of the modern trends that’s revolutionizing learning across fields of study. Gamification isn’t only applicable to the personal learning processes, but it can be leveraged in the classroom and workplace training needs.
The latest statistics indicate that gamified-based learning is expected to grow by 15.4% up to 2024. Amongst the greatest drivers for gamification in learning is its potential to motivate and engage learners acros.
Gamification generally enhances imagination and increases concentration and focus which leads to idea creation. With e-learning becoming a norm, gamification is one of the best approaches to turning passions into careers and this supports talents and innovation. With that, teachers can gamify lessons where necessary to cultivate creativity in learners.
- Help Them Learn Through Mistakes
The world has and has had different geniuses before, but Albert Einstein is one of the formidable examples of geniuses that the world still fathoms about up to date. A uniform factor of all Einstein’s discoveries is the power of perseverance and learning through failure and flaws.
Quite often young learners find failure a major demotivator which limits their exploration and creativity. This becomes worse when educators or teachers emphasize scores rather than effort. If any teacher desires to see students thrive through failure, they must recognize and appreciate effort despite continual failure.
By appreciating the effort and encouraging persistence despite failure, students develop a growth mindset and this helps them learn how to tackle challenges in different ways. In the long run, they become creative thinkers and great problem solvers.
- Push for Innovativeness
Learning environments and teaching styles matter a lot in nurturing creativity among learners. Generally, they play a role in impacting students’ learning patterns and encouraging innovative thinking. Teachers who would love to cultivate the ability to think creatively must begin with altering the learning environment.
Develop a creative learning environment that may comprise flipped classes, classroom wall decor, or introduce hands-on learning experiences where students can learn through observable practices. All of these positively impact the learners’ thinking patterns and in the long run, they become creative thinkers.
Creativity is among the most sought skills in the modern world. Almost every problem today ranging from unemployment, and medical issues, to combating climate change requires creative thinking and innovativeness. Nurturing creativity isn’t an intricate task with the fact people are born creative. However, this trait diminishes as one grows partly depending on the environment that one is exposed to. If you’re a teacher, nurturing creativity in a classroom can become a walkover by adopting the provided approaches here. By the way, they will not only help students think creatively, but they will also enable them to become reliable problem solvers, hence leading to groundbreaking ideas and innovations.