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

3. One Right Answer Testing Mentality: Why Are Schools Failing to Produce Creative Graduates?

  • Tests don’t tell teachers all that students know and can do, an they don’t tell teachers how kind a student is to others. As such, tests strangle the development of creativity. Test scores provide extrinsic motivation, which is deleterious to real learning. Such rewards have been shown to fail in the long run. They also create an aversion to risk taking. Dependence on test scores also discourages innovative teaching. For some students, it discourages them from taking classes like the arts where assessment is more subjective.
  • Summative assessments like standardized tests are all about ranking students. Formative assessments are tools the can help students grow. It gives teachers information in real time that lets them monitor and adjust learning activities. Unlike summative tests, they don’t focus on labeling students. If done right it can provide intrinsic motivation. It also allows for self-assessment. It allows for performance assessment such as student portfolios. Doug provides several ways to do formative assessments along with how technology can be used to facilitate the process.

4. The Dog Chupacabra Ate My Homework: What Is the Theory of Multiple Creative Abilities?

  • About the most creative things students do outside of art classes is make up excuses. Doug goes on to explain the difference between Big-C creativity, which is what experts at the leading edge of their fields do and Little-c creativity, which is was we can all do as we solve problems we haven’t faced before. Teachers who think and act as things arise that call for new ways of doing things are examples of Middle-C creativity. The rest of this chapter details the multiple ways students and everyone else can demonstrate creativity. Doug’s creative domains include: artistic, academic, physical, interpersonal, entrepreneurial, spiritual, and one called academic survival. This later category involves gaming the system and can include creative ways of cheating and plagiarizing.

5. A Job Not Worth Doing Is Not Worth Doing Well: What Are the Attributes of Projects That Help Instill Creativity?

  • When choosing a science project, Google asks: 1. What do you love? 2. What are you good at? 3. What do you want to change? Since most people spend their days as project-based learners and managers using real world skills, we should also ask students to complete a lot of projects. Real-world daily work seldom or never involves test taking. Doug goes on to give no less than twenty criteria to consider when assigning projects. They include: allowing for creativity and having a clear purpose, allow for student choice, relevance to the student’s life, stressing higher-level thinking, involving information finding, are hands on, use technology, can be collaborative, allow for sharing results, and allow for reflection. Teacher attitude is important as they lose some control over time, the final product, and “correct” answers. They are also likely to not have expertise in all subject ares that come into play. They need to stay enthusiastic and be prepared for not all projects working as planned.
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