All the posts, the tools and story starters this week have got me thinking about creativity; in fact in dialoging with Mary Lee Newmann on my last blog, I wrote in a comment, “I needed this lesson (all our discussion about digital story telling) to remind me how important it is to exercise our “creativity muscles”. So when I saw Giorgio Bertini’s blog title Amplifying Creativity, I was drawn in to read it. He references “creative intelligence”, a term that I actually knew little about. So I did a little research and discovered Robert Sternberg’s Triarchic Theory of Intelligence. He proposes that, “Successfully intelligent people discern their strengths and weaknesses, and then figure out how to capitalize on their strengths, and to compensate for or remediate their weaknesses. Successfully intelligent individuals succeed in part because they achieve a functional balance among a “triarchy” of abilities (creative intelligence being one)…Moreover, all of these abilities can be further developed.” – Robert Sternberg. (emphasis is mine).
I have always thought about creativity as a facet of human spirit,relative to imagination, not a facet of intelligence. I believed that we are all creative, but not in equal measure. Creative intelligence theory proposes that we are all equally creative but some cultivate this intelligence while others repress it. Sir Ken Robinson points the finger at the education system as a significant factor in the suppression of creativity. So is it true then that, “Human creativity is activated through processes of intention and attention ? and that when we become aware of these processes, we can learn how to direct them into what psychologists call creative flow“?
My aroused curiosity about creative intelligence lead me to learn about Csikszentmihaly’s theory of creative flow. He suggests that people are happiest when in a state of concentration, or complete absorption with the activity at hand. When experiencing creative flow they get so involved that nothing else seems to matter; they enter into an optimum state of intrinsic motivation. Here time flies and your whole being is involved in using your skills to the utmost. To achieve a state of flow, you must strike a balance between the challenge of the task and the skill of the performance. Both skill level and challenge must be matched and high.
Does this description of creative flow bring your experience in etmooc to mind? What course design elements have the course leaders included to challenge and engage you? How have you been encouraged to develop your creativity and exercise your creativity muscles?