Author Archives: Eugene Spiers

Creativity in Thinking Skills Lessons

Bobby sits in the corner. He contributes little and completes even less work. He is one of the most negative students I have ever met. It has bothered me all year. I see his class once a fortnight for Thinking Skills and I have tried so many things to engage him.

Like most teachers I know, after the lesson it is Bobby that is on my mind and not the others who are usually engaged and enthusiastic.

So it is with great pleasure that I can report that in the last fortnight Bobby spoke to me and his class mates more than he has all year. He has asked and answered questions and started designing a new product that he has invented.

They started by discussing some of their favourite products and gadgets. They then used lots of brainstorming, mind mapping and post-it notes to identify problems with learning that they could try and solve with a new invention.

Bobby’s class have got that far and will finish designing and modelling their products after half term. Please see the attached photos for what another group came up with.

I have been so impressed by Bobby and his designs and his engagement and I guess that a part of this post is about not giving up on finding the thing that will make the connection that with every Bobby.

Another point I want to make is how much all the classes have responded to having the chance to be creative and autonomous. They were good earlier in the year when given the chance to teach a mini-lesson of their choosing but this has been even better. (see pics on @yogspiers timeline)

The final point I would like to make is about building and using your PLN. The ‘designing a future learning device’ was not my idea but a colleague’s. She was kind enough to share and am glad she did.