The JK children and I have been painting collaborative large canvases using different media to create interesting patterns and texture. The goal of this project is to immerse ourselves in the process of being creative. The final product will be beautiful regardless of how it actually looks because we immerse our whole selves in its production.
Children have millions of ideas every day. After all one of the hallmarks of youth is having an intense absorption in activities. As parents and teachers we know how difficult it can be to stop children in play and move on to something else. Children have the innate ability to combine things and ideas in new ways, challenge assumptions, come to a decision independently and act on it, an ability to shift from one idea to another, the ability to take a risk, a tendency to create and test a hypothesis and explore alternatives to sustain their activity. These are all hallmarks of creativity and creative people. What is creativity? How do we get in touch with our creativity or develop a creative attitude? What stops us from beginning creative? How can we adopt the attitude of living in the wow of our ideas like the children in our classrooms?
Michael LeBoeuf in his book Imagineering offers this, "all of us can enhance our idea-producing capabilities by adopting a spirit of intellectual playfulness and a sense of humor. Hang loose. Toy at ideas. Avoid being too careful. Enjoy."
Steve Jobs offers this thought about creativity, "Creativity is just connecting things. When you ask creative people how they did something, they feel a little guilty because they didn't really do it, they just saw something. It seemed obvious to them after a while. That's because they were able to connect experiences they've had and synthesize new things."
Both statements support exactly what we know about our own creative process as well as the best practices for nurturing our creativity demonstrated by the children in our care. Who, I want to assure you, are very creative.
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