Filed under Creative Thinking Strategies

I Love You More Than Moldy Ham. . .

I Love You More Than Moldy Ham. . .

You know I’ve been spending time with pre-adolescents when a book titled I Love You More than Moldy Ham sets me chortling in the bookstore aisle. The book, targeted at primary grade students, tells the story of a young monster who trudges through swampland to gather ingredients for a special dinner for his mom. It … Continue reading

Squeeze a Stress Ball for Divergent Thinking?

Squeeze a Stress Ball for Divergent Thinking?

Can squeezing a soft ball help you generate more ideas? How about a hard ball? What would you predict? Those are questions addressed by researcher JongHan Kim in a study titled, logically enough, “Physical Activity Benefits Creativity: Squeezing a Ball for Enhancing Creativity.” Studies in embodied cognition both fascinate and puzzle me. The assumption of … Continue reading

Students as Questioners: What Do Writers Ask?

Students as Questioners: What Do Writers Ask?

A few weeks ago I wrote a series of posts about students as questioners, ending with posts on questions in particular disciplines: What do historians ask? How about scientists? Mathematicians? Then, I’ll admit, I got stuck. In each of the previous subject areas I considered the types of questions professionals asked when engaged in creative … Continue reading

Creative Exercise: You Be Jillian Michaels!

Creative Exercise: You Be Jillian Michaels!

The holiday season has official begun—time for rejoicing, rushing, celebrating, shopping, giving, craziness and eating. Lots of eating. This seemed the perfect time for a post about creative exercising. While her TV persona was a bit much for me, I enjoy the monthly workouts that Jillian Michaels does for the Curves exercise system (no, this … Continue reading

Gratitude: Annually, at Least

Gratitude: Annually, at Least

In the United States, it is almost time for Thanksgiving, our national celebration of gratitude and food. Two years ago at this time our household was recovering from a fire–nothing huge, but enough to fill the house with smoke and our lives with chaos for weeks. It reminded us of the many things we take … Continue reading

Fallonventions: How Can We Resist?

Fallonventions: How Can We Resist?

OK, I’ll admit it. Staying up late to watch the beginning of Jimmy Fallon’s Tonight Show is one of my guilty pleasures. I know I should go to bed. I know I can see videos the next day. But  Fallon’s inventive craziness is sometimes too much to resist. One of my favorite segments is Fallonventions. … Continue reading

Students as Questioners 7: What Do Scientists Ask?

Students as Questioners 7: What Do Scientists Ask?

Which is denser, concentrated detergent or regular strength? Which fish swim more quickly, those with plants in their tank or a mechanical aerator? Which cleaner kills more bacteria on cafeteria tables? What would happen if we poured milk instead of water on bean plants? These are just a few of the questions from my elementary … Continue reading

Students as Questioners 6: What Do Historians Ask?

Students as Questioners 6: What Do Historians Ask?

One key way to encourage student questioning is to think about the questions that creative professionals in a discipline might ask. Every field moves forward when individuals ask questions. Helping students understand the questions in a field helps them envision how the creative processes of the discipline move forward. So, what about history? As a … Continue reading

Students as Questioners 5: Questions in the Disciplines

Students as Questioners 5: Questions in the Disciplines

One of the three keys I’ve identified for supporting creativity in the classroom is teaching the creative methodologies of the disciplines you are teaching. “Teaching the creative methodologies” is a fancy phrase for the idea that, whatever subject you are teaching, you teach not just the “what” of the subject but the “how” as well. … Continue reading