The school year is drawing to a close, and every year about this time I try to reflect on how the year went. To start off, I didn’t get the time to blog as much as I have wanted to. I wanted to write about some of the amazing projects my students have created, and it just didn’t happen. I am hoping that next year it will be different.
As I look back over the past school year, I am amazed at some of the projects that my students did. This year was the year that I expected more use of technology, or use of web tools 2.0. My students made creative Google Stories, they made informative Voicethreads, and they used Jelly_Cam to make stop-motion videos. They also made videos using Windows Movie Maker to persuade the class on different topics. My students also used a large variety of resources such as Google, Mindcraft, cameras, blogs, and books and internet websites to help them.
This year I tried to draw out creativity with my students. I know they can be creative when they want to. Some students seem to have a hard time with a project when I tell them I want them to be creative.
I have a poster in my room that I got off the internet and I refer to it often.
It seems like when I don’t tell students to be creative they can be. It seems like a curse or something. I am not sure. I have tried to make my classroom a place where they can be creative. I have found a few things that have helped this year.
One thing I have tried this year is to have a classroom where brainstorming is a major part of every project. Students have had time to focus on ideas and sub-ideas based on topics they have chosen to study. I give them the perimeters of the project they fill in the rest.
I feel I need to teach them different tools to use. For example, I teach my students the different things that the Google search bar does. I show them how to use Windows Movie maker, and other things. Sometimes I have just given them a tool and asked them to just play with it. I did that with Prezi, and Google Sketch-up. Some students will be the guinea pig for a web tool, because it is something they are interested in learning. Once they feel comfortable with the tool they can feel comfortable to use it in a way to make or create something.
One thing that I did this year that I really didn’t do in previous years to make a list of projects with my students. I took their input and made a list of possible projects or topics they could choose from. We added to the list when someone had a great idea for a new project. Using their interests I was able to tap into their creativity.
I know this is short list of just a few things that I have done. You may have done other things. I would be interested in reading some of your ideas on how you were able to tap into your students creativity. If you want to email me, my email is firstname.lastname@example.org or you can leave a comment below.