Children are born with equal qualitative intelligence like adults. Their minds can create things that can mesmerize adults and be in total awe with their creation. But, this creative nature of our children slowly decreases as they become students and are engrossed in completing their syllabi, doing homework, and giving tests. In the process of growing up and attaining various knowledge about different subjects children suppress their creativity and focus more on getting good grades and passing with flying colors. It is in no way good for the students. Ignoring their creative thinking may deprive them of the overall development that they require to build a healthy personality. Creativity is not about creating things but also about adding a touch of originality to a particular thing. Any student can use colors, draw shapes, but applying colors according to his own imagination will make him creative.
Sometimes, due to a lack of creative thinking students lag and become mentally upset for not being able to think outside the box regarding a particular topic. In such cases, teachers and parents should take the responsibility to build a creative space for the growing child so that they can put forward their views and opinions without the fear of being judged. Adopting the following ways can assist teachers and parents to develop creative thinking skills in students and their children.
How can a teacher develop creative thinking in students? The first and foremost thing is to teach creatively. Teachers are required to shun away the old traditional ways of teaching. Their focus should be on the child. It should be a child-centric learning experience. Teachers need to welcome the inductive method of teaching and give more emphasis on divergent thinking rather than creating rote learners. A creative approach will build a healthy classroom environment that will consequently encourage students to think out of the box. Let your creative teaching be an inspiration for your students to build creative thinking.
Asking Socratic questions
A very effective way to induce creative thinking in students is to ask open-ended or Socratic questions. Questions about topics that leave students thinking about the result of the situation or story will make them generate new ideas. Having a welcoming attitude towards these eccentric ideas created by the students will encourage them to enlarge the limits of their knowledge and grow creatively. When left with an open-ended question students develop their imagination and find out a variety of solutions to the question. When the students encounter their abilities to create new solutions they become comfortable with the ambiguities of life.
Encouraging sensitive observations
One way through which students can develop creative thinking skills is through observation. If teachers and parents encourage their students and children to observe situation sensitive manners they will surely build a deeper relationship with the environment and its happenings. They will understand the fact that there are consequences to actions that they make. Students will learn that every action has the potential to have an adverse effect if not taken out in a controlled manner. Students will come to realize that alternative ways can be found out if we brainstorm a little extra.
Using poetry as a tool
Poetry can be considered one of the best tools to enhance creative thinking in students. Poems help students to interpret things that the poet has tried to convey. The figurative language used in poems by poets creates a sense of awe among students and encourages them to create their own. It takes certain skills to write poems. One has to keep in mind the meter, the figurative language, and also the rhyme to be able to create a meaningful poem.
If students are allowed to explore an ample amount of poems on their own they will surely tend to observe better. This will enhance their creativity and imagination. Thus, poems should not only be a source of academic text but also a source of inspiration for creativity.
One cannot emphasize more the significance of group discussions. Teachers should create opportunities for students to participate in group discussions on open-ended questions. It gives the students an opportunity to understand different perspectives of the same question. It makes them competent enough to work cooperatively and collaboratively, thus enhancing their creativity. Group discussion assists students to accept the diversity of opinions, which in turn enlarges the limit of their knowledge.
A teacher should always consider this activity a crucial part of a student’s creative growth and development apart from physical and intellectual.
Giving a twist to literary texts
Literature and literary texts such as poems and dramas have an advantage over the texts of Science and Mathematics. While the latter is rigid, requires a certain amount of logic, and has limitations, the former can be given a twist according to the creative skills of the students. Students can either create their plays and enact them or they can give the existing classical plays their twist with a different ending and present accordingly.
This attempt will motivate the students to imagine an alternative that will be liked by all. The more they imagine, the more they will be able to construct innovative stories and mystical poems.
Every aspect of the students’ thinking should be given room to grow. Equal opportunities are a dominant feature when it comes to creative development. A student must be made aware of the world around him. Awareness of the world will make his imagination powerful, which will consequently make him an empathetic person who spreads love and brotherhood in society.
The above ways can surely build creative thinking in students, irrespective of their inclination towards a particular subject. They will be able to taste the power of their creativity when it comes to making things according to their own. Therefore it is the responsibility of teachers to provide them with a creative environment where young minds can blossom with their imaginative skills and creative thinking.