ERIC Number: EJ851072
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Jul
Reference Count: 0
The Creativity Continuum
Walling, Donovan R.
TechTrends: Linking Research and Practice to Improve Learning, v53 n4 p26-27 Jul 2009
Children are innately creative, and the youngest often are the most original because they have yet to be influenced by the creativity of others. One way to think of creative expression is as a continuum. At one end is originality, or the creation of something wholly new, "original." At the other end is replication, or the re-creation of something created by others. Stretching between these two extremes are derivative creations, products that borrow from others' creations but are adapted in varying degrees. When students engage with technology to produce media--videos, PowerPoint presentations, and other products--they often are challenged to be original by the technology itself. Much of the creative software that is most accessible to young media producers comes loaded with content such as still images, animation, sound, music, and so forth. Add to this the urge that many young people feel to be imitative and mix in the ease of digital sampling and copying. The result is that students may feel constrained, rather than freed, by technology that should be allowing them be creative. How can teachers help students break the technological shackles and achieve a high level of media creativity? The author suggests that one useful class discussion might focus on how creative producers take existing content, such as a Shakespearean plot, and adapt it to new purposes. The point is that the more students are encouraged and enabled to manipulate software presets and found ("borrowed") content, the more they will move toward the originality end of the creative continuum.
Descriptors: Creativity, Writing (Composition), Discussion, Creative Activities, Computer Software, Educational Technology, Discussion (Teaching Technique)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A