Search this site
Other stuff

All banner artwork by Brady Johnson, college student and (semi-) starving artist.

My latest books:


        Available now

       Available Now

Available now 

My book Machines are the easy part; people are the hard part is now available as a free download at Lulu.

 The Blue Skunk Page on Facebook


EdTech Update




« Social reading, MN modest, and a good review | Main | Focused, fragmented or ... ? Blogging advice »

Putting creativity back in education - my new project

Choose projects that improve your personal value no matter how the project itself does. Scott Adams

I'm excited. Find below the working outline for my new book project about creativity, technology, and education. I'm on a mission to return creativity to the classroom - for the good of kids. In my dotage, I've decided to only write about things that intrigue me and that I have have fun writing about. I will be learning a great deal during this process myself. 

Send me readings with ideas I need to share and your ideas!

(At the end of this post, a list of writings about creativity I've already published.)


Computing Outside the Lines: Developing the creativity in every learner (working title)

Winter/Spring 2014, Target length 35-50,000 words

Table of Contents

Introduction: How did Vasco da Gama spark my interest in creativity in education?

Concerns about creativity in today’s schools

Concern 1: Creativity isn't just about art.

Concern 2: Creativity must be accompanied 
by craft and 

Concern 3: The world is not really interested in your creativity, but that's OK.

Concern 4: If we ask students to demonstrate creativity or innovation, we need some tools to determine whether they have done so.

Concern 5: Creativity is viewed as the antithesis of good test scores.

Chapter One: The Rise of Creative Class(room): Why is creativity is no longer a “nice extra” in education?

 How does Apple make its money?

 The creative class, right brain skills, and Luddites

Where are the jobs going and why?

What do national standards say?

How are schools doing in creating creative students?

Chapter Two: I Can’t Define It, But I Know It When I See It: What is creativity anyway and what does research say about it?

The 120 definitions of creativity - and one good one

Putting ADD students in blue rooms and letting them daydream - what neuroscientists say

Measuring creativity as an innate talent

Chapter Three: Let the Art Teacher Worry About Creativity: Why are schools are failing to create creative graduates?

First Grade Takes a Test

Extrinsic motivation and a fear of taking risks

Myths of creativity

Only academically “gifted” children are creative.

Creativity does not belong in core courses like math, science, social studies, English.

Creativity is fluff.

Creativity does not require learning or discipline.

Technology automatically develops creativity.

Teachers themselves do not need to display creativity.

Chapter Four: The Chupacabra Ate My Homework: What is Johnson’s Theory of Multiple Creative Abilities?

Csikszentmihalyi’s Big C and little c

Johnson’s Multiple Creative Abilities


Numeric problem-solving

Graphic artistic (drawing, painting, sculpting, photography, designing)

Athletic/movement (Sports, dance)

Musically artistic









Chapter Five: My Report on Vasco da Gama: Can students demonstrate creativity outside the arts?

All creativity starts with a problem

Personalized learning and creativity

Chapter Six: List Three Right Answers: What some simple ways teachers can promote creative thinking

Chapter Seven: Just Because It’s Pretty Doesn’t Mean It’s Creative: How can technology encourage creativity?

Technology and the Illusion of Creativity

Show a kid a movie, and you'll entertain her for an hour; give her a camera, and you'll engage her for a lifetime.

Chapter Eight: Not Everything That Counts Can Be Measured: Can - or should - teachers assess creativity?

Chapter Nine: I Stole the Idea From the Internet: Do educators need to be creative in order to produce creative students?

Chapter Ten: Change is Good, You Go First: Why do we love creativity but hate creative people?

Think Different ad

Overcoming our dislike and fear of creativity

Accepting the challenge of truly creative students and peers

Does your school culture embrace creativity - or stifle it?

Chapter Eleven: This is Just a Teaser: What are some other really good things people are doing with technology to enhance creativity?

Projects that promote creativity

Organizations that promote creativity


OK, that's it. Wish me luck and send me ideas.

Here's some stuff already published:

EmailEmail Article to Friend

Reader Comments (4)


I love this project. The outline looks fantastic, can't wait to see it.

January 22, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterKelly Dumont

Thanks, Kelly. Me either!


January 22, 2014 | Registered CommenterDoug Johnson

I'm so excited about this! I've been thinking a lot about how to bring creativity back through my library programming - I can't wait to see what you have to write about it. I'll be looking through those links for sure.

January 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterDiana

Thanks, Diana. I'm sure you'll be seeing a number of blog posts related to creativity as I do research and write as well. I appreciate the comment.


January 26, 2014 | Registered CommenterDoug Johnson

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>