Tag Archives: creativity block

Educational Innovations

I was recently introduced to a new educational technology, “Zite.” Zite now has an influence on my research processes. This application is an academic resource for discovering and obtaining new educational information. For me, it has replaced news websites, and television channels. What is Bolter’s ideology of remediation and new technologies? “Remediation involves both homage and rivalry, for the new medium, but also makes an implicit or explicit claim to improve the older one.” (Bolter, page 23). Zite offers a user friendly interface, based on educational and personal interests important to the individual. Therefore, Zite essentially eliminates aimless scrolling and wasted time. Let’s be honest, who doesn’t need more hours in a day?

I probably would have never read this article if it wasn’t for Zite. I did not have to research websites or search engines, I just opened my Zite application on my iPhone and there it was. On November 19, 2014, Keith Sawyer published an article titled, “Ten Educational Innovations To Watch For In The Next Ten Years.”
“Education experts at the Open University (UK) led by Professor Mike Sharples, have identified ten innovations that are already in currency but have not yet had a profound influence on education.” (Sawyer). The influence on education is existent, but not defined. According to Porter and DeVoss, “New economies of writing are emerging that promise to carry writing practices in directions that are not yet clear but which will have significant impact on basic literacy.” (Porter, DeVoss, page 195). Though the technologies educational resources and academic assets are not yet evident, it does not mean that they will never be.

Ten Educational Innovations:

1.) Massive open social learning: social networking

2.) Learning design informed by analytics: “design and analytics work together to support the development of successful learning and teaching.”

3.) Flipped classrooms: Video lectures, allow students to work at their pace, pausing to make notes when necessary.

4.) Burn your own devices: “teachers become managers of technology-enabled networked learners, rather than providers of resources and knowledge.”

5.) Learning to learn: Web tools/activities such as reflective journals and concept mapping support learning to learn.

6.) Dynamic assessment: The assessor interacts with students during testing, ways to overcome each person’s current learning difficulties.

7.) Event based learning: “do it yourself science” engineering and crafts projects

8.) Learning through storytelling: Developing a narrative to create a meaningful whole

9.) Threshold concepts: a new way of thinking about a problem, a subject or the world.

10.) Bricolage: a practical process of learning through tinkering with materials. Learning through play.

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Get your creativity on…

We all want to be creative, right?  Okay, maybe I’m a bit ahead of myself.  Some of us, myself included, enjoy and thrive on being creative in many different aspects.  Creative writing, creative arts, creative design; the list goes on and on.  During the creative process road blocks can occur, throwing us off and causing us to reach a standstill.  Very similar to writer’s block, creativity block keeps us from moving forward in the process.

My fellow blogger @ashmcmichael tweeted the article Excellent Tips to Stimulate Creativity, outlining simple ideas to give your brain a break and get the creative juices flowing:

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1)  Engage in physical activity;  go for a walk, jog, shoot some hoops, dance, or just get outside and get some fresh air.  This will get your mind off of the task at hand and give you the ability to start fresh when you return to your project.

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2)  A simple break is all that’s needed sometimes.  Spend some time with friends, family, pets, etc.; watch TV, listen to music, scan the internet, stop by social media (which I am usually doing anyway), or read a book, newspaper or magazine.  These are all excellent ways to engage our minds in other topics and off of our current project.

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3)  Change up your routine.  If you normally begin a project late at night, try getting up early and starting right away.  If your routine is already set that way, trying flipping it around. If you normally work in your room on your bed, try sitting in the kitchen at the table, and vice versa.  A change of scenery may inspire something new.  Make small, simple changes at first and see if that sparks your creativity.

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4)  Jot it down!  When an idea strikes you, write it down.  No pen or paper? Send yourself an email!  These days most people have a smartphone that allows internet connection, so send yourself an email or a text.  Refer back to it later when you need it.  Don’t be that person that says “I don’t need to write it down, I’ll remember.”  You won’t.

So when your creativity level is waning and you need a jump-start, try one of these four ideas to get back on track.  Good luck!

While coming up with my thoughts/ideas on how to go about creating this blog, Michael Wesch’s video The Machine is Us/Using Us came to mind.  I had to rethink the way I was going to showcase these ideas and the means in which I would present them to you, the audience.  I hope it was enjoyable 🙂