Innovation and Creativity in education

Ms. Shakuntala Jaisilghani

Principal, Trinity International School & Junior college

“If you want something new, you have to stop doing something old”

Peter F. Drucker

At the heart of all learning is the way we process our experiences, especially our critical reflections on our experiences. Experiential learning engages students in critical thinking, problem solving and decision making in contexts that are personally relevant to them. It makes content relevant and arouses interest in the subject.

In education, scaffolding refers to a variety of instructional techniques used to move students progressively towards stronger understanding and ultimately greater independence in the learning process. It also means, to provide contextual support through the use of simplified language, teacher modeling, visuals and graphics, cooperative learning and “hands-on learning".

Generation Z is looking for a 360 degree change in their education. The Focus needs to shift to the top three levels of Blooms taxonomy-Analyze, Evaluate, Create.

5 Ways Educators can make classrooms more Innovative and Creative

  • Teacher's mindset regarding how to design and deliver content is critical to the learning process. Most teachers were trained to educate solely from the teacher's point of view. To change this type of delivery and make the classroom more innovative, they need to think about their students as leaders too--acting as guides rather than teaching content and asking students to spill out information on a standardized test.Conscious incorporation of metacognition helps teachers to change teaching strategies and students to develop their learning skills.
  • Self-reflection can offer teachers a critical opportunity to see what worked and what failed in their classroom. Educators can use reflective teaching as a way to analyze and evaluate their own teaching practices so they can focus on what works
  • Use Problem-Finding Instead of problem-solving, teachers can help students look at the world by finding gaps to fill using problem-finding. Problem-finding is equivalent to problem discovery. Teachers can use problem-finding as part of a more significant problem process as a whole that can include problem-shaping and problem-solving all together. Problem-finding requires an intellectual and imaginative vision to seek out what might be missing or should be added to something important. Using this strategy, teachers can provide students with the opportunity to think deeply, ask critical questions and apply creative ways to solve problems.
  • Let Students Take Risks And Fail. A pedagogy based on discovery and inquiry is so much more exciting than remembering dates, information, and taking tests. Pre-determined answers on an exam in a traditional education setting can hold students back in ways we cannot measure.
    “An essential aspect of creativity is not being afraid to fail. Edwin Land”
  • Design thinking process is a set of structured strategies. There are five phases to the process:
    a. Discovery: I have a challenge. How do I approach it?
    b. Interpretation: I learned something. Now, how do I interpret it?
    c. Ideation: I see an opportunity. What can I create?
    d. Experimentation: I have an idea. How can I build it?
    e. Evolution: I tried something new. How do I make it evolve.

The creative process requires time and collaboration, so creating time for creative thinking activities is important. Using a flipped classroom approach for example, where learners prepare content and do written exercises preparing for lessons in advance at home, allows teachers to plan for higher-level creative thinking activities during class time.

Creating a climate in the school by providing an environment that supports innovation can be very powerful. Schools that are successful at stimulating creative learning will value and celebrate learners’ creative and innovative contributions

“Creativity involves breaking out of established patterns in order to look at things in a different way.” Edward de Bo

Ms. Shakuntala Jaisilghani

Principal, Trinity International School & Junior college