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When do we want creativity?


Our district office building is full of teachers this week who are learning how to teach ina prescribed fashion that suits our new reading series - something that is happening in thousands of district around the world.

Yet at the same time, these same teachers are hearing the message from educational reformers that both they and their students need to exercise creativity - that it will be the creative people who, in an economy beset by automation and outsourcing, will thrive.

Teach exactly like this - and be creative.

The question is not whether to go by the book or to try new things, but when to go by the book and when to try new things. In my experience, even the best teaching method, best resources, and best intentions never work with every student. It is for the kid you've told a thousand times and still doesn't get it, as the quote above describes, you need to get creative, ignoring the best practices and school-supplied texts.

When I am in the dentist's chair, I am reassured knowing the professional who has the power to cause great pain or great pain relief is following recommended procedures. But I also would like to think that the dentist, when it is called for, can find a creative solution to a unique toothy problem. It's not if creativity should be used - but when.

Don't value creativity for creativity' sake. Value it because it can solve problems and create opportunities that standard practices cannot.


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Reader Comments (1)

Differentiation .... I'm working on it!

September 6, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterSuzanne Tecza

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