Creativity and Innovation Day

Collective intelligenceImage via Wikipedia

As I start at the Macquarie ICT Innovation Centre next term I thought this holidays was a good time to think about creativity and innovation.  So I spent time exploring, watching, listening and thinking about these topics.  Today is Creativity and Innovation Day so I thought I would set my self a deadline to synthesis my thoughts and collect my resources.

After reading 30 questions in 30 minutes on How To Save The World I thought it might be a good way to organise my thoughts so far without getting too tangled up in them.   It’s a pretty long messy list of questions but it’s reallly just a reference for me.

Digital Literacy

  • What’s the difference between looking at a digital image and look at a photographic artwork?
  • What is the value of a newly created artwork vs an artwork selected as part of a mashup?

Learning about teaching

  • In teaching practice is sharing resources more important than discourse about teaching?
  • In an ideal workflow how does the sharing of resources between teachers work?  How is this passed onto students?
  • Can teachers learn from other teachers teaching in online learning environments?
  • How can I really notice what is happening when I’m learning about teaching and learning?  How can we change the way we learn in professional communities so that we can notice? (Daniel Goleman: Why aren’t we all good samaritans?)
  • What is my real passion – apart from teaching and learning?  What is the process of identifying it?  How can I create teaching and learning opportunities so that I all members of the experience are able to dip into their passions?  (Ken Robinson, Schools Kill Creativity)
  • What is the right mix of individual participation, content publishing, open-ended conversation, meetings, projects, access to expertise, relationships, community culltivation and context to build a community of practice amongst teachers? (Nancy White: Spidergram Activity)
  • Who are the stewards for an online community of practice for teachers?  How will we reward this responsibility?
  • What are some good examples of teaching teachers to communicate and collaborate online?  Trusting, communicative communities.
  • How can the opinions, thoughts and ideas of teachers come fully into the link through online learning communities?


  • Why do I feel like creativity is really shiny and pretty when it actually feels like frustration and futility?  Is this how others feel?  Is this why people avoid it?
  • How can we motivate people to stop
  • How can we be creative failures?
  • We all learnt about creative teaching techniques are they really more important now or is this a misconception?  Are there other things we should be focusing on like processing power. (Creativity Techniques Wiki)
  • Do meme’s inspire the kinds of creativity we want for society? (Creativity Portal: 365 pictures)
  • Do competitions inspire creativity we want for our society?
  • Do we need to limit creativity to inspire inspiration?  Who decides on the boundaries? (Limit creativity get innovation) How does this tie in with meme’s and other social ‘events’?
  • Do these resources really inspire creativity in the classroom or are they the new worksheet?  Labuat, Exploratree,


  • Complexity requires a consistent light touch, look too hard and you lose focus?  What are the skills?  How early do these skills need to be taught?
  • Do meme’s inspire the kinds of innovations we want for society? (Creativity Portal: 365 pictures)
  • Do competitions inspire the kinds of innovations we want for our society?
  • Should schools be focused on innovation?

Social learning

  • Why is it important?  Why don’t most communities actually reach the point of collective intelligence?
  • How do we help find the teachers with passions?
  • Don’t reject any offer.  Try to make your partner look better.  Don’t judge. How do create environments where people are more interested than they are interesting?  (This is an excellent talk by Randy Nelson at Pixar)
  • How can we create learning environments that encourage a diversity of people to contribute?
  • Much of my reading has talked about the necessity for individuals to be fairly self-aware and self confident to be productive in online communities.  How do you build this?
  • Is Ze Frank a learning community?  What makes his projects so successful? (ZeFrank)
  • Have we always ‘wasted’ time or are we actually ‘wasting’ more of it using collaborative technology?
  • What is the difference between a constellation of practice and a community of practice?
  • How can you encourage the quieter members of the teaching community?  What is the impact is we don’t?  A lopsided system remains?
  • Is emotional intelligence a key factor in the success of online learning communities?  Are most teachers more socially aware than other groups?  Eg if you compared them to WOW communities? (Daniel Goleman: Social Intelligence and the Biology of Leadership)
  • How do we overcoming the technology barriers such as – difficulties in tagging and using rss and having lots of places to go to do things.   If we overcome some of these barriers how do we ensure we still keep the good stuff like the strong communities of people sharing slides, videos etc in the communities that are currently available?

Practical thoughts

  • – Refocus attention on finding teachers who seem to have good offline social intelligence and engagement.
  • Blogging – start blogging about communication skills, listening watching, responding – take this from the NSW Literacy Curriculum
  • Focus on the other people in different situations.  What are they thinking and feeling at the moment?
  • Develop holistic communities that deal with issues that are important, have broad relevance, inspire passion, allow individuals to contribute in a variety of ways.
  • Develop online communities that have diverse leadership.
  • Have those leaders use all the technology and other resources to populate those communities including: rss, multimedia and content publishing.

Creativity resources

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