Thursday, February 14, 2013

R. Keith Sawyer - Creative Teaching for the 21st Century

Creative Teaching for the 21st Century
Learning & the Brain Conference February 2013
R. Keith Sawyer, PhD
Washington University, St. Louis / Atari

Newsweek: Creativity in America
BusinessWeek: The Innovation Economy

The Challenge: There's some concern that we're not creating the creative graduates that we need

Tapping America's Potential: The Education for Innovation Initiative (report from the Business Round Table) July 2005
Innovate America (report from Council on Competitiveness)
Rising Above the Gathering Storm

According to these reports, we need:
- Better K-12 education
- Increased Higher Education quality and funding
- Increased R&D funding
- Intellectual property protection and tax credits
The focus of all of these reports is on improved education
Missing: an understanding of how innovation works, how people learn for creativity, and how to redesign schools


Broadly accepted view that creativity is the lone genius having the lightbulb flash of insight
But in reality, there's always a story of collaboration behind innovation - Group Genius (his book)

A lot of books talking about how the Internet is bringing us into a new era of collective intelligence (e.g., Infotopia, Democratizing Innovation, Wikinomics, The Wisdom of Crowds)
Model of producers and consumers as separate entities is no longer accurate. Web 2.0 is blurring the boundaries.
Most creativity studies have focused on what's going on in an individual's mind. But examining collaborative creativity allows us to explore how the sum of the parts can be more than the whole. (e.g., improv jazz or theater troupes)

The Creative Classroom (book Structure and Improvisation in Creative Teaching)
- The core is collaborative conversation,
- where the classroom flow is improvisational:
- Teacher and students build knowledge together, and
- unexpected insights emerge.
*I have really been trying to do this this semester, and my classes have come to some extraordinary insights that I have never thought of before, but I also worry that I'm not channeling and guiding them sufficiently to prepare them in the curriculum as well as I need to.

What we shouldn't do: Instructionism (Seymour Papert)
- Knowledge is a collection of static facts and procedures
- The goal of schooling is to get these facts and procedures into students' heads
- Teachers know these facts and procedures; their job is to transmit them (transmission and aquisition model)
- Curriculum: Simple facts and procedures should be learned first
- Assessment: To evaluate learning, assess how many facts and procedures have been acquired
Where's the creative learning? Problems with Instructionism:
- The knowledge acquired is relatively superficial
- Retention is low
- Transfer to new situations is weak
- Ability to integrate knowledge is weak
- Ability to work adaptively with knowledge is weak

Creative learning
- Knowledge: Deeper conceptual understanding
- The goal of schooling: Prepare students to build new knowledge
- Teachers: Scaffold and facilitate collaborative knowledge building
- Curriculum: Integrated and contextualized knowledge
- Assessment: Formative and authentic
Sawyer, 2006, Cambridge Handbook of the Learning Sciences

Fundamentally opposed to Instructionism Active Learning - Students work with, and use, facts/skills/concepts as they solve complex real-world problems (learning facts and procedures in context) - Students work in collaborative teams because the tasks are demanding (authentic need for collaboration, not just for the hell of it) - The professor guides and supports students as they work on their projects and problems This is the kind of learning environment you need if you want creative output/learning The Key Components - Start with a problem or design challenge - Students explore the problem through inquiry and discussion - Students work to find solutions - The process must be guided by the instructor - Students create tangible products that address the problem (there is more and more lit proving that externalizing learning through the creation of products (design thinking) improves learning and retention - Prototypes and sub-tasks are required elements Four Challenges for Instructors 1. Identifying a good problem or design challenge (within ZPD, closely connected to core) 2. Helping students learn actively 3. Fostering effective collaboration 4. Supporting the creation of shared artifacts and effective critiques The Vision is Taking Shape InvenTeams (Lemelson-MIT) (Excite, Empower, Encourage) Camp Invention Wireless Handhelds - he showed a really cool software in which teacher can track which students are working with whom and what they're working on, but didn't mention the name Integrated Teaching and Learning Laboratory, UC Boulder No lecture halls, just spaces for kids to get together and work collaboratively How do we get there? Myth: The flash of insight, Reality: Emergence over time Myth: Straight path to success, Reality: Multiple dead ends Myth: The lone genius, Reality: Small ideas from many people Tapping the Creativity of Teachers In innovative organizations, professionals: - Continually learn - Work collaboratively - Engage in 'mutual tinkering' where small sparks add up to big ideas - Change teams, assignments, and organizations frequently (not as much in education, but...) The Take-Home Message -Creativity is more important to our students and our society than at any time in history. - Recent research shows... Bah! He went fast and then blanked the screen! No silver bullet that's going to change the face of schooling. It's what we have to do collaboratively to create the creative schools of the future.

Charles K. Fadel - Creativity and innovation

Creativity and Innovation: From Man vs. Machine, to Man and Machine Learning & the Brain February 2013 Charles K. Fadel, MBA 21st Century Skills Our new world: VUCA - volatile, uncertain, complex, ambiguous Race up the value chain, with low skilled jobs that can be done by machines at the bottom and creativity at the top "I'm calling on our develop standards and assessments that don't simply.." Obama video: Google's Ass-Kicking Self-driving car video: Hatsune Miku "Vocaloid" - virtual pop star Production planning model solved using linear programming would have taken 82 years in 1988, only 1 minute in 2003. Not just processor speed. Imagine Google Goggles with Translate! "We tend to overestimate the effect of tech in the short run and underestimate the effect in the long run." Roy Amara Hype cycle for emerging technologies Cloud computing = "synthetic neocortex" We are on the road to ExoBrain - computing power equivalent, not the cognitive ability, within the next 7 years "The future is already here - it's just not very evenly distributed." William Gibson World of AI and instant search. So what do we teach for? Wisdom Ethics Fluidity with tech Adaptability Resilience Curiosity Asking the right questions Synthesizing/integrating Creating! Japanese proverb: "Hammer the nail that protrudes" We do this far too often in education. Individuality v. Conformity "The Geography of Thought" Which pencil? Same color or different? Americans like different, Korean's like same. Radical vs. Incremental Creativity. "The Dot" - fell asleep with his pen on the paper, woke and reflected, wrote a book. Vs. Fadel's and others' incremental patents toward video conferencing. schmidhuber low-complexity art "Computers will write more than 90 percent of news in 15 years, and will win a Pulitzer Prize within 5 years." Kristian Hammond, CTO and cofounder of Narrative Science, a company that trains computers to write news stories Robert Plotkin, "The Genie in the Machine" about the automation of invention Evolution done algorithmically Humans control the "fitness criteria" The fallacy of automatophobia is that the automation is complete. This is never true. Humans always have a role to play. This always requires new skills. We must constantly upscale. "The race between technology and education" It is up to us to minimize the mismatch between technology and education systems. When education is behind, we experience social pain. When education is ahead of the curve, we prosper. "The best pathway involves teaching children to 'learn how to learn'" Vernor Vinge "The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn" Alvin Toffler Center for Curriculum Redesign

Milton Chen - The Creativity Edge in Education

The Creativity Edge in Education: Arts, Technology & Passion Learning & the Brain Conference February 2013 Milton Chen, Ph.D., Senior Fellow George Lucas Educational Foundation (Edutopia) Neuroscience Supports Creative, Collaborative, Passionate Learning! Hands-on, Project-based, in nature, the arts Creative Learning = Authentic Learning School Life = Real Life "The great waste comes from [the child]s inability to utilize the experiences he gets outside the school...within the school...on the other hand, he is unable to apply in daily life what he is learning at school." (Dewey) On edutopia: Multiple Intelligences Leave No Child Behind Great books: Dewey's lectures to parents George Leonard Education and Ecstasy Sir Ken Robinson: "We are born creative. The problem is that we are educated out of our creativity." "We have taken to educating kids from the neck up." "Average students learn subject matter in a third or less of present time, pleasurably rather than painfully." George Leonard Don't forget social and emotional learning This is the platform on which we must build academic learning 14 points on test scores on average on edutopia: The Heart-Brain Connection: The Neuroscience of Social, Emotional, and Academic Learning. Dr. Richard Davidson. (book) "The Emotional Life of the Brain" Entire presentation on Lecture: a method for getting information from a professor's notes to a student's notes without it passing through either of their brains. Clay Shirky TED talk: How social media can make history - we are living in an age of extraordinary potential We can liberate students. We have liberated content - it's available 24/7/365. Learning any time, any place, any path, any pace. Start from a student's passion. Let them progress at their own pace. On edutopia: Music and Dance Drive Academic Achievement edutopia is using Google Translator to subtitle all of their movies Chen's book: "Education Nation" A nation is only as good as its educational system Creativity & Innovation: Key to an education nation. This is a must do, not a nice to do Every 30 seconds, 24 Hours of New YouTube Video K-1 Attack hybrid vehicle designed by inner-city Philly kids Why don't we have more curriculum about their own bodies? They're so curious about their bodies and how they work, as well as things in their everyday lives. Why isn't this the focus of education? "Objects of curiosity, of learning, are hidden in plain sight." Carol Dweck's Mindset "Kids are carrying this change in their pockets." Every medium we've ever created to express creativity is right next to every other medium on our smart phones curriculum the elements by theodore gray gooru - educational search engine (!/home) WolframAlpha - people telling their own stories about how they have learned and achieved, directed toward kids What's your definition of a great school? Make this definition short and measurable Einstein: "Not everything that counts can be counted. And not everything that can be counted counts." Do the students run in at the same rate they run out? Assess passion for learning!