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GT Best Practices: Creativity

May 4, 2011

by Lori Chow

All too often, we speak and hear of “Best Practices” of gifted education without truly understanding what that means.  As a result, each of our Campus Reps has undertaken the challenge to evaluate and research the “Best Practices” (as based on the book, Best Practices of Gifted Education by Robinson, Shore and Enersen).  The following article is part of our 15 part series, GT Best Practices.

Lori Chow is the campus rep at Cottonwood Creek, 2010-2012.

What is creativity?

  • It is not only the process of art, drama, and music but also it is necessary for success in industry, academia, and other careers.
  • You look at the needs of addressing the needs of gifted children by understanding their creative characteristics.
  • Creative individuals often challenge the rules, can be indifferent to formalities, are careless, sloppy with details, and intolerant.
  • One area of consensus is the direct influence of parents, teachers, or mentors on the minds of these children.

Ways in which parents support their children’s creativity:

  • They are authoritative and give their children freedom without excessive worry about risks.
  • They respect their children as individuals and as creative persons and see them as capable.
  • They are moderately close as a family, not dependent, but accepted.
  • They are not permissive, but share values instead of levying rules.
  • They emphasize achievement over grades, and they appreciate and cultivate creativity.
  • They observe the children to see where interests lie, and then capitalize on those.
  • They are active and have many interests themselves.
  • They exhibit humor and family fun.
  • They provide and take part in experiences that are stimulating.
  • They are often models of creative thinking and behavior.

At Home:

  • Look for summer programs that closely match the needs of students.
  • Allow a place where some work can remain in-progress.

In the Classroom:

  • Teach students through concepts and relationships.
  • Encourage students to find problems.
  • Evaluate and praise honestly.

At School:

  • Provide flexible scheduling.
  • Set expectations that both home and school will be places that value creative thinking.
  • Creative works enhance all our lives and bring fulfillment to those who create.
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