Thursday, April 20, 2017

Great Project Ideas to Foster Student Creativity

This appeared in my In Box this morning... Creative Educator always comes through with great project ideas to foster Student Creativity 
Technology project ideas for your grade level
If you are looking for great technology project ideas to engage your learners through the end of the school year, explore these high-level lesson plans for:
Happy Creating!

Choosing Maker Space Resources to Ignite Student Passion and Support Creativity and STEAM Learning

Here's a table created by ISTE colleague, Karey Killian, who came up with a 'wish list; of possible Maker Space resources, categorized by ISTE Standards (and some Common Core Math/Language Arts Standards). She states:

“...Our purpose with these (Maker) spaces is to ignite the passions within students to discover their unique talents and abilities.  We want spaces where students can explore, be creative, work collaboratively, and make new inventions along the way…” 

“…Here's a link to the Word document that should be viewable to anyone with the link. You're welcome to use any of this document if it can strengthen your program in any way.
 Click on the above to access the full document...

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Robotics Impacts Student Ability at Innovation and Creativity!

Are there ways to impact students ability to be more innovative and creative?
Using these techniques will make a profound difference in your class.
"By the time a child is 10 or 12, he or she has figured out that it's much more important to get right answers than to keep asking thoughtful questions",  according to research for Tony Wagner's bestselling book, Creating Innovators: The Making of Young People Who will Change the World. 

Wagner says "a child's innovative framework is strengthened when teachers bring a sense of play to the curriculum; taking offbeat approaches and making whimsical connections to the course material." This allows children to think creatively-opting to think in new ways.

2. Curiosity
Programs that allow children time to interact with various technology-related materials, and engage in a variety of individual and team projects create greater understanding and a desire to learn more.

In conducting interviews with hundreds of innovative people for his book, Wagner also found innovative people were shown how to connect their passion to success. The best teachers and parents always supported what the students' passions and natural curiosities were, and made an effort to connect what needed to be learned to satisfy that curiosity.
They let children choose the subject matter they wished to study or design their own investigations to learn more. This connected success leads to a larger purpose-children's individual motivations and interests, he says.

Increased fearlessness, especially when it comes to taking risks and trying new ways of doing things, makes children better at creative problem solving. If you can name effort as the thing that you want to encourage, effort creates ability.

Having a greater sense of purpose makes finding solutions more urgent. This gives innovators greater incentive to take risks, and look for new methods of solving challenging issues."

Digital Story Telling to Foster Student Creativity

Good session on Creativity and Digital Story Telling (details below)... I found these slides on the web...

"Technology resources provide opportunities for engagement, problem solving and critical higher-order thinking."

Presented by the ISTE Digital Storytelling Network / Author / Julie Jaeger Bio

Paper Circuits: Support Contemporary Student Creativity Projects

Here's a good one that I found in my In Box... I like what offers... If you're not familiar with Paper Circuits, I recommend you peruse this for a few minutes to get yourself informed... They seem to me to be a powerful invitation to put the ART in STEAM Education...
light saber GIF

Paper Circuits In Makerspaces -  One of our favorite makerspace projects (so far) have been the creation of paper circuits.  It's an affordable, easy to learn project that can be completed in 30 minutes which is great for schools. There are countless project ideas that incorporate the paper circuit concept which can be added to most curriculum.  For example, you can combine the ARTS with Technology and make interactive circuit artwork or popup electronic greeting cards. 

If you want more info, check out our step by step paper circuit tutorial that includes 5 free project templates to get you started."

WARNING: The BBC Micro:Bit May Inspire Creativity! :)


Coding and Creativity for Today's Students

Here's a good session I came across... Click on the screen capture, below to launch recording (may take a short while to load. I think that if used in an informed way, this resource can support kids in their creative efforts!

Creativity is Essential to Student Success

Good piece from ADOBE 

Closing the skills gap: Why creativity is essential to students’ workplace success

The compensation data provider PayScale recently published its 2016 Workforce-Skills Preparedness Report, and the findings were eye-opening for schools and educators.

The report details the responses of almost 64,000 hiring managers across a wide range of industries who were asked about the “skills gap”—the disconnect between the skills students have when they graduate from college and the skills companies need. Here are a few of the stats that stood out for us:
  • 60% of managers said new graduates do not have the critical thinking and problem-solving skills necessary for the job
  • 46% said new graduates lack the necessary communication skills
  • 36% reported new graduates have inadequate interpersonal and teamwork skills
Similar findings are appearing everywhere. Here’s just a sample:
  • The World Economic Forum reports that students with social and emotional learning (SEL) skills like critical thinking and problem-solving, creativity, communication, and collaboration are better equipped to succeed in the evolving digital economy.
  • Bloomberg analyzed the skills gap among MBAs and found that the skills managers want most but have the most trouble finding include strategic thinking, leadership skills, communication skills, creative problem-solving, and working collaboratively.
  • Fast Company describes 2016 as the year of the hybrid job, in which employers want multifaceted employees who have both hard skills like database technology and soft skills like communication and collaboration.
Dan Schwabel of Millennial Branding, which partnered with PayScale on their survey, summed things up this way: “Graduates need strong communication and problem-solving skills if they want to interview well and succeed in the workplace.”

Closing the gap with creativity
So how can educational institutions help students close the skills gap? It’s clear to us that they need to go beyond teaching traditional skills and make fostering creativity and developing digital skills a priority in the classroom.

Many of the skills current grads lack are associated with creativity, from critical thinking to communication to collaboration. But when schools teach students how to create digital content, they help them develop these in-demand skills.

Here are just a few examples:
  • Through digital storytelling with video and illustration, students learn how to communicate ideas clearly and effectively.
  • Through data visualization with animation and digital imaging, students become better at understanding, simplifying, and explaining information.
  • When students work on complex creative projects like designing apps and websites in partnership with other students, they develop critical collaboration and interpersonal communication skills.
  • And as they work on creative projects of all types, students develop the creative mindset employers crave.
In an education documentary, Tony Wagner of Harvard’s Innovation Lab was quoted as saying: “Employers say over and over ‘I will teach them (graduates) the content. What I can’t teach is how to think, how to communicate, how to collaborate, how to initiate.’”
But our schools and educators can certainly teach these things. And Adobe can help.

For an in-depth look at what forward-thinking educators are doing to close the skills gap, visit the Adobe Education Exchange.