Creativity: conceptions of a group of exemplary teachers

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Kenneth Aaron Scott (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:
Carl Lashley

Abstract: The project seeks to describe how a group of exemplary teachers conceive of creativity and their duty to develop the capacity. Creativity has emerged as a capacity integral to success in the 21st Century as exemplified by the US Congress' formal recognition of creativity as a skill that schools should work to develop in students with the passage of the 21st Century Readiness Bill (House Bill 347). The project was motivated by an assumption that a deeper understanding of creativity can be achieved by analyzing the conceptions of creativity by those who are called upon to develop it. The importance of the project can be summarized by the notion that the concept that might be viewed as the pinnacle of human cognition (Krathwohl & Anderson, 2010), absolutely key to human self-actualization (Maslow, 1959) and crucial to our economic survival (AMA, 2007) may also be the least understood within public education. The hope of the project is that it might contribute to our understanding of creativity by capturing the descriptions of certain exemplary teachers' conceptions of creativity through their day to day experience in attempting to develop the capacity. The study employs a strategy of mediating a three-way conversation between the (1) existing conceptions of creativity found in the literature, (2) the perceptions of a group of exemplary teachers and (3) the standards that the teachers are directed to teach (Common Core State Standards). The mediation of the three-way conversation resulted in the conception of a working model of creativity that expressed several themes that emerged from the study. The study expressed the creative contribution as the product of certain tensions inherent in the creative process. Teacher descriptions of their attempts to navigate these tensions within their schools were obtained by a series of open-ended interviews. The analysis of the interviews in light of the existing research on creativity and the Common Core State Standards resulted in several findings. The findings include: (1) support by the teachers of the Common Core State Standards as an ally in their efforts to develop creativity; (2) recognition of an unyielding resolve on the part of the teachers to develop the most appropriate context for the development of creativity; (3) and the affirmation that domain relevant skills (content knowledge and analytical ways of thinking) and creative ways of thinking are both essential to the overall creative process.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2015
Common Core Standards, Creativity, Education, Innovation, Leadership
Creative teaching $z North Carolina
Creative ability $x Study and teaching
Creative thinking $x Study and teaching

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