Teaching Outside the Lines: Developing Creativity in Every Learner by Doug Johnson

9. I Stole the Idea From the Internet: How Can Educators Become More Professionally Creative?

  • Doug encourages teachers to experiment on children until every child is working to their full capacity. This will also allow teachers to model creative behavior. While you should try to bring change-resistant supervisors along, sometimes you have to be a bit subversive and just do it. Be sure to spread the word when something new works. To help with new ideas you need to access good ideas from others and the Internet offers many ways to do that. Doug explains how to use social media to create and expand your professional learning network.

10. Change Is Good. You Go First.: Why Do We Love Creativity but Fear Creative People?

  • Creativity means doing something different, and as such, it is often suppressed by educators. Change can produce winners and losers in terms of power, budgets, and comfort levels. It may even cause harm. Schools were created to create a uniform product. When it comes to being creative with technology, teachers are often intimidated by students who have greater skills. Since asking for one right answer is the opposite of creativity, won’t help efforts to make good test takers, and unlike standardized tests, creativity is hard to measure. It’s ironic that business people who value creativity often push for more uncreative testing. The book ends by busting myths that imply only some are creative, money motivates creativity, competition beats collaboration, and creativity is a neat process. Doug also promotes honoring student work, presenting it to the public, more focus on the arts, classrooms open to visitors, project-based learning, using technology to create, the importance of play, working on solving real problems, and balancing the focus on craftsmanship and innovation.

Doug Johnson

  • Doug is the Director of Technology for the Burnsville-Eagan-Savage (MN) Public Schools. His teaching experience has included work in grades K-12. He is the author of nine books, columns in Educational Leadership and Library Media Connection, the Blue Skunk Blog, and articles published in over forty books and periodicals. Doug has worked with over 200 organizations around the world and has held leadership positions in state and national organizations, including ISTE and AASL
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